Torn about settling for less child support

Deja - posted on 06/20/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Ladies, I need your help. My stbx and I are in the process of divorcing. So far we have agreed on everything, such as time-sharing and debt/asset splitting. The only problem we are having is child support. Based on our state's calculations the ex is gonna owe my son roughly 424 a month in child support (this is in addition to the combined 550 he pays for his two other children each month). He is insistant that he will not be able to pay me anymore than 250 per month and is begging me to settle for that amount. I am so torn. On the one hand, I have to provide for my son for 18 years, he currently 9 months old, and his costs are only going to increase as he gets older. If I settle for 250 I know I'll get it but I'll be stuck with that amount. If I push for what is rightfully owed to my son his father may end up in jail if he doesn't keep up with the payments. What do I do? Do I push for the full amount and force my ex to man up and do what he has to do as a father?

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Dove - posted on 06/20/2012

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Follow the calculator. If it's too much for him, he is welcome to go through the agency himself to get it reduced. Likewise... I wonder if his former ex is aware that SHE can go through the agency to up the support she is getting now that he is employed. Child support does not have to be set in stone for 18 years. It can be increased and lowered at any time depending on the parent's income increases and decreases.

Deja - posted on 06/20/2012

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Sorry, I meant he wasn't working when he got the order for his other two children

Deja - posted on 06/20/2012

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The reason the state says he has to pay more for our son versus the combined amount for his other children is due to change in pay. when he got the order for his other children he was working and the amount was based on min wage. With our son he is working so the amount is based on his pay (and he's actually getting a discount because he's paying for his two other children). I've tried to negotiate with him but he won't budge. I can't short change my son by only taking the 250. My ex is the type of person who will not give me a dime more than he's ordered to, so negotiating for part of our son's future extra curricular costs isn't an option.

Sarah - posted on 06/20/2012

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I would think that the amount would be somewhere in between since what he can afford to pay would be divided between the 3 kids, not the 2 as previously he was paying. On one hand, you need to ensure you'll have enough to help with your sons costs, but on the other, it would also be in his best interests to not have grudges between his parents. Can there be a happy medium (such as $350/month + cost of 1/2 sporting/activities as he ages)? It may be woorth it in the long run to come to a compromise in order to keep the peace, something that may not benefit you or him, but the person who would win by this is your son. Good luck.

Deja - posted on 06/20/2012

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Thank you so much for your advice! I've been in tears thinking about what to do. And you are right, his other children get what they deserve and my son should as well. My stbx says he needs to be able to support his own life and wants to be able to do things with the kids when he has them, so that's one of the reasons he thinks he should pay less. I tried to explain that our son doesn't just need support every other weekend, he needs it all the time.

Sarah - posted on 06/20/2012

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Absolutely! Why is your son any different than the other two children he already pays on? That's totally not fair for your son to suffer. Your stbx should and needs to understand just because you two are not going to be together does not mean he is no longer a father to your guys child. Push for what you are rightfully owed. It will be the best thing for you and your son! IF your stbx has any problems with it, he can go to child support himself and file a hardship, but most generally, he has to have solid proof in order for them to decrease his amount. Otherwise he is no different than any other man who has to pay! Your son deserves it.

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