still paying child support for stepchild that is 18... no court order... crazy?!?!?

Lisa - posted on 02/04/2009 ( 12 moms have responded )

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Ok, so here's the deal... husband paid child support for years as ordered by the courts, then when stepson was 9 he came to live w/us... husband & ex agreed to stop the child support & had order changed with the court... when stepson went back to live w/biomom @ age 15 the child support was to stay the same... Notta... but about a 1 1/2 years ago she came to him saying that b/c of her most recent divorce her financial situation was crap again & just didn't know what else to do... that she'd talked to state about assistance & they'd already told her that if applied for assistance would come after my husband for child support again... so she was asking if could come to agreement for support... we played w/all the #'s & came to find out that if went through the state again it would cost double what we could financially afford for support & then we'd be the ones broke as a joker. So we came to agreement w/her for support between us/her & did not submit to the court. In fact, my husband never actually signed the agreement.



Now here's where it really gets interesting... my stepson turned 18 a few mths ago & graduates from high school in a few mths... keep in mind there is NO I repeat NO court order that says we have to pay anything... we have talked to an atty where she lives & he has told us that if we stop paying there's nothing legally she can do b/c in the court's eyes there is no support due... that if she had wanted to modify the court order for supp she would have had to do so b4 he turned 18 & she didn't... so do we continue to pay?? or tell her to stuff it?? up to this point we have continued to pay b/c feel obligated morally, not legally, but it's just getting to the point that we feel that we shouldn't continue to pay, that she should be able to take care of herself... especially since she has again remarried (#3 for her)... we've thought of maybe sending him (my stepson) money direct instead of sending to biomom & then if he wants to give to her that's up to him, but just don't know... we've talked about stopping the pymts completely many, many times, but know that all heck will break loose if do so... any advice/comments would be greatly appreciated.

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Pam - posted on 02/14/2009

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easy solution pay it directly to your stepson, so what if all hell breaks loose if you are not legally reponsible to pay her then don't, morally you will do the right thing to pay money to assist the stepson, make an agreement with him directly, what does he need to go to college or whatever.

Rebecca - posted on 02/14/2009

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Go onto website www.cmoptions.org.  This is a website that has been set up for those in your situation.  It offers free, impartial advice and if you cant find the info you are looking for there is a freephone number on the website that you can talk to a human about your situation.  Do not do anything rash as this could cause you long term issues as you are probably aware.  There is NO legal requirement to support a young person after they have left full time education ( by full time education it is meant that it has to be a non-advanced course for more than 12 hours per week.  A Uni degree or equivelant may not be considered as full time education!) regardless of living arrangements for the lad or his mothers financial situation!  Current legislation states that a child support case would finish when the child turns 19 or leaves full time education, whichever comes first.



 

Rachael - posted on 02/04/2009

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My suggestion would be, unless she is in dire straights and will end up homeless without the money- set up a bank account for your stepson and start putting the money in it. That way if she wants to make a legal issue out of it, you technically have it, and then if not, you can use it for college, expenses, and you are in charge of distributing it, not her (as I have a feeling she isn't using it all for him anyways). I don't know how your state works, but ours is either 18 or graduation of high school- whichever comes last. So for most, they turn 18 before they graduate, so even then we are required to supply support. Also, be aware, private agreements usually don't hold up in court unless signed by a judge, so keep your receipts because if she wants to get nasty she could. Make sure you have an attorney to call if all goes down.

I am sorry. Child Support is so hard, it just makes things so complicated!

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Lisa - posted on 02/19/2009

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well I have finally convinced my husband that it is safe to stop paying his ex child support --- & WE HAVE STOPPED!!!  We'll see how the cookie crumbles... :)

Pamela - posted on 02/18/2009

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Here in South Africa the New Maintenance Act states that we have to carry on paying maintenance until such time that the children are in stable jobs. My stepson is 21 and my step daughter is 18 and we are still paying.

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STOP PAYING STOP PAYING STOP PAYING... We pay child support out the BUTT.. and we are the ones that are broke all the time... I can not wait until 1. the child turns 18, or 2. moves in with us..



If you want to give your son the money that is up to you, but you should not have to pay her no matter what..

Lisa - posted on 02/17/2009

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Quoting Sandy:



What does your son plan on doing after High School?  Go to College?  Live with his mom? Take on his own responsibilities?  I agree with Rachael ...perhaps an account in his name would work better then it would be between he and his mom whether it be used to support the household or go to personal needs, school, etc.   Good luck






we think his plans are to go to JR college for couple years, then go for 4 yr degree at regular school.  That changes daily... it was like pulling teeth just to get him to sign up/take the ACT -- which we paid for.  We have also split costs for all his graduation expenses (caps/gowns, invitations, announcement pkgs, etc.) on top of the money we'd been sending her.  I think we're going to need all the luck we can get! :)

Lisa - posted on 02/17/2009

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see that's the whole thing... she can't go back to child support office... see when my SS came to live w/us in 2001 there was an order entered with the court modifying the child support order to show that no child support was due... past, present or future.  That Order has NEVER been modified.  Although my SS went back to live w/his mom at end of 2005 it was still agreed that there'd be no change to the Order as she was married.  It wasn't until end of 07 when she decided to get another divorce that she hit us up for $$ again.... b/c she didn't know what else to do... So we talked w/her about it & it came out that she'd already talked to the state about getting assistance & they'd told her that if the state gave her any assistance the state would in turn come after my husband for child support.  So we looked at the child support worksheet & basically came up w/a verbal agreement between us/her to pay a set amount ** less than if it had went through the state... which it never did.  However there was an agreement typed up that she signed about the payment, but my husband never signed. 



We have since talked to an attorney (where she lives since would have jurisdiction over the case) & he says/said that if she'd wanted to modify the Court Order for no support (i.e. to get child support reinstated) then she'd had to have done it BEFORE he turned 18... & that since she didn't do that, then there's nothing legally she can do.  Well he's been 18 since Sept & I just don't feel like we should continue to support her. 



 



Thx ladies for all your comments, it makes me feel good to know that I'm not just being B--- by wanting to stop paying her.  I think I agree w/Rachael the most... maybe set up an acct & just hold onto the $$ in case he needs it... then if she does throw a tantrum or try to go to court, the money is still there... just in our control not hers.  & trust me Rebecca when you've dealt w/child support offices in 2 different states over a period of 14 years, you learn not to take it into your own hands.  But like I said as for as the state/court is concerned there is no order for support, it's just an agreement we had w/her to keep her from going back to court & now at this point her opportunity to go back to court is gone.



 



Hope this clarifies a bit more -- I would have responded to everyone sooner, but live in KY & got blasted w/the ice storm & have just recently been able to get back online.  Any further comments/advice would be greatly appreciated! :-)

Rebecca - posted on 02/15/2009

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I wish people would be reasonable when it comes to child support.  There is LAW in place to state how things should be done and it is there for a reason.  You cannot just take the decision into your own hands without there being consequences.  The mother could always go back to the CSA and I dont think that is what you want.  Take it from someone with lots of experience in the matter and contact WWW.cmoptions.org they are there to help in this very situation.  Then discuss it properly with the mother.  DO NOT TAKE THE LAW INTO YOUR OWN HANDS REGARDING CHILD SUPPORT!!!!!!

Heather - posted on 02/14/2009

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Child support is meant for the child, not the child's parent who can't take care of herself. She is not your responsibility, the child is. If you and your husband want to continue to support the boy, I'd opt for the private account. If he plans to go to school, he's going to need the help. It's apparent that his mother did not think about his future, only hers.

Sandy - posted on 02/04/2009

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What does your son plan on doing after High School?  Go to College?  Live with his mom? Take on his own responsibilities?  I agree with Rachael ...perhaps an account in his name would work better then it would be between he and his mom whether it be used to support the household or go to personal needs, school, etc.   Good luck

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