What is child support supposed to cover?

Bettie - posted on 03/26/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )

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My husband pays child support for his only daughter in joint custody. The mother, however, is the residential parent. Can she be legally made to show proof of what the child support goes to? We know there are things she buys for herself that she alone can not pay for since she doesn't work but with a total of three children (only one is my husbands) and receives support for at least one other (we know her father, is a very messed up lifestyle) and the older one possibly gets SS from her dad.



We have looked up several different searches on this subject and the mother promised their daughter she would get a laptop (she just turned 16) this year from her taxes (which had been filed by the youngest's dad years past but he no longer lives with the mother) and she wasn't getting the amount this year she received previous years. She and my husband took turns claiming their daughter and since she took hers out of turn, he was able to file this year, but the mom expected him to buy his daughter a laptop of her choice (and price). From our search, we have seen that any thing needed for education was to come from the child support solely (she is home schooled and although the online school provides the computer, she wants a laptop with the excuse she can't concentrate while her younger sister is too noisy while she is also online schooled.) My husband told her he would buy her a longer cable so she could move to another room, but her mom has forced the issue to the point of his daughter taking sides and outing him for three months now.



She says, her mom says, what he did to keep mom from getting any more tax refunds. She was told he turned in the younger child's dad since he no longer lives in the home and has no legal right to claim another's daughter on his taxes. They can not file jointly now that he has a different address and that has been proved since she took him to court over his child support and now that is in the system. Never has actually heard his daughter speak that she doesn't want him in her life now, along with me, but has always gone through text on facebook and we both know some of the texts aren't how she would word certain things.



Like I said, a very complicated mess. Should my hubby go see a lawyer and stir up this mess even worse, or just let things go until the mother actually forces her own children against her. She has had at least a dozen or more boy friends/lovers by now and a few while still legally married. We have enough against her to make her life very miserable but what would that do to the children still under her lies and other low underhanded ways.

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Tabitha - posted on 03/26/2012

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It does seem complicated. I'm sorry you guys are going thru that. I'm not sure how things are where you're at but my ex tried to get the court to make me show receipts for what I had spent the money on. He said our son never sees the money. This is what the judge told him: Child support is to "maintain the household where the child lives". It's not meant for extras. As long as the child is taken care of meaning he has a place to live, decent clothes and food to eat. It's really not anyone else's business where she spends the money.



What little child support I do get goes into the same account I pay the bills from and go shopping with. I make sure that my son is taken care of with my own money so if his money needs to go towards gas in my van or even to get my hair done, that's how it is.



Also, usually educational things are split down the middle and doesn't come from child support. Book rent, school school clothes, sports equipment...we have to split these things evenly. Anything that the health insurance doesn't pay, we split that evenly as well. If the school provided a computer for homeschooling, that's what she should be using. Her mom needs to get the other child in the other room while schooling is going on. Let me add that this laptop situation sounds more like the mother has taught the daughter how to manipulate to get what she WANTS. Again, if she already has a computer for the schooling, she doesn't NEED a laptop for her bedroom.

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As long as the child's basic needs are being met... I don't think child support should be a fight.



If the kid needs a laptop and mom won't buy it... why don't you guys just get it? Fighting over money is petty unless the child's basic survival needs (food, clothes, shelter, medical care, etc...) are not being met. I understand she needs the computer for schooling, but if she already has access to one.... a laptop is not a necessary tool for survival. Just a perk.

Amanda - posted on 03/26/2012

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Instead of behaving like children why not just buy the kid a laptop? Sometimes the simple answers are the right ones. Dont waste the courts time over a stupid laptop.



As for what child support covers, it covers rent/mortgage, household bills, clothing, food, medical, dental. No laptops are not covered in the child support, these are extras, that if both parents are mature enough would split the cost on.



There is no law against having boyfriends, nor would any of your claims make her lose her children, but it sure as hell will put you in the poor house with lawyer and court costs. So you pick does getting even worth making yourself broke and the children disliking you even more?

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