Step Parents Paying Child Support

Lacye - posted on 01/02/2011 ( 65 moms have responded )

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I've been thinking about this for a while and I figured this would be a good debate. It's from a personal situation that I'm in right now so please be patient with me. My bf and I are going to be married soon. His ex (during one of her rantings) informed us that if he married me and I got a job, she was going to force me to pay child support. Now I'm not sure if this is true and I can't seem to find much information on this. Right now I don't have a job, I'm in college so I can get a good job. To go further into this, she doesn't work, she's not trying to find a job, and she has said before that she's not going to get a job. Is it right that I (as a stepmother) should have to pay her child support (even though he is not behind on it) when she doesn't even try to get a job or to get her education?

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LaCi - posted on 01/02/2011

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The step parent's income should not factor into what the biological parent needs to pay. In extreme cases, it may happen. I would imagine for ehr to even attempt she'd need to find a damn good lawyer, and with no job and *apparently* not enough child support she'll have a fuck of a time trying to get one. :)

In short: Fuck her. :D

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My husband has a child from a previous marriage and my income cannot be used in the child support calculation. We live in Colorado. Now, if he loses his job they will base the child support off of what he is capable of earning so it is possible that I would have to pay for it in that situation but the calculation is based solely on his income or potential earnings. His ex thought she was in titled to part of my income and she got a big shock when she had social services recalculate the support.... Turned out my husband had been overpaying and her monthly payment went down. Especially now that we have a toddler and another baby on the way! She also is the type who has never worked since the divorce and lives off of her child support and what ever government aid she qualifies for. Hope this helps.

Jodi - posted on 01/02/2011

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Child support has absolutely nothing to do with the step-parents. I am not sure where you live, but in Australia, the stepparents wages aren't even taken into consideration when calculating the child support amount, only the parent's wages. It is the parents' job to support the child, end of story. And that is EXACTLY the way it should be.



Sounds like a real piece of work, that one.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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I think that's what I meant in the beginning...only his income is used in CALCULATING the amount that needs to be paid...but if you are married you are JOINTLY responsible for ALL bills...including child support.

well...I didn't say that end part in the beginning, but now I know.

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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What??? That's hogwash!

My husband's ex IS on welfare. I mean, they didn't reduce it by A LOT but they still reduced it and he hadn't even asked for it to be reduced.

We get by... I mean we don't go without, our kids don't go without.

I just think that's such BS because my husband's ex is on welfare. She qualified for a free townhouse and doesn't pay for utilities. She gets $310 CSP, $800 CTB/Universal (when I only get $500 for two kids), plus an extra $200 from welfare and food stamps (so doesn't have to pay for food). She has no bills other than her cell/inet! No rent to pay... nothing.

I'm a little bitter, can you tell... but she brags to my hubby all the time that she doesn't know what to spend the extra money on. Please. She buys new clothes for herself monthly (we buy maybe 2-3 outfits for the year), has way more furniture than us, can afford to join a gym, i wish.... and doesn't even work.

Ack. Can't wait until I go back to work... maybe then I won't be so bitter. ;) Well, I probably will... cause I still have to work for the things she gets handed to her.

My husband even makes jokes that I'd be better off financially without him. :P



And the whole reason they broke up in the first place was because of her!!! She cheated on him with multiple random dudes she met off the inet. He still stayed with her and tried to work it out. Until she tried to smash him over the head with a beer bottle when she was drunk. Should he not be allowed to start a new life with someone else?



I mean, we usually don't complain... we understand we made the decision to have our children. I just hate when the man is always made out to be the bad guy. If she were to have more children. They wouldn't tell her she shouldn't have more kids if she can't afford them. She'd just get more handouts from assistance. Whereas the man (who's working for his living and taking care of his kids) gets told he shouldn't have had more kids if *he* can't afford them.... Hogwash. Ok *whew* done my rant. :P

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Brittany - posted on 10/02/2011

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I think it depends on what state the child lives in. My husband has a child and if her mother were to take us to court for child support we would have to follow the rules of the state she lives in. She does not live in the same state and no my husband is not a dead beat. My step-daughter has her own cell phone, that we pay for, we buy all of her school clothes, provided money for parties, birthday and Christmas presents, field trip money, and other expenses.

Right now, no you are not married but, yes I could see a situation occurring where your money is counted as being joint, after you are married. The mother could take you both to court and show the income level for your home, in general, has increased. The judge would not make YOU directly responsible for making the payments but, yes the judge could take more money out of his paycheck.

♥TIA♥ - posted on 05/17/2011

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Nope, screw her. She can't get one dime, UNLESS, you file joint tax return, if your ex is behind. Say good bye to all of it or most of it. Even if it's all your money you earned. It's very complicated, but there is a injured spouse relief process you go through to maybe get some money back that can be taken away from you faster than a blink of an eye. So for your sake yes, get another bank account for your money without your husband to also make sure child support enforcement does not take without your consent just like tax returns. However if you don't protect yourself that way with your bank account and have joint. There is absolutely no recovery for your money. Good luck. and if you do file joint tax return, don't forget the injured spouse relief form! If they want kids, they can support 'em! You just keep doing your part whenever you get the kids. Your a great lady, keep up your good endeavors in supporting yourself and family.,

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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I *did* make a mistake- she gets $400 not $800 for CTB/universal. That's still around $700-$800 spending cash for the month considering she doesn't have to pay rent or utilities. I still think something's fishy. Maybe, why she's so afraid to go to court.

Jaime - posted on 05/17/2011

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Yep, those are my thoughts too because I'm pretty sure you said that you're from Canada no? So I'm assuming that she's in Canada as well...sounds like she's definitely scamming the system which sucks even more because it's people like her that make it more difficult for those of us that actually need support, to get it. I can't get child care subsidy right now, so I can't work...thus I'm stuck on welfare and HATE it!

Jaime - posted on 05/17/2011

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That sucks balls Jennifer! I'm on assistance and I can promise you that I'm not living in the lap of luxury like your husband's ex. I usually have a bit left over at the end of each month which I don't spend so that I can go visit my family for a weekend in the summer...if I didn't save that little bit, I'd never be able to go anywhere or do anything. My son's father isn't required to pay me support because he's on disability...funny how he can still run a delivery business but he can't work a 9-5 job and support his kid!



Pertaining to the OP, when my mom got married to my step-dad he took on the responsibility of raising my older sister and me, so when they got divorced 8 years later he was required to pay support for his 4 biological children as well as me and my sister. I think it depends on the situation, but generally speaking the step-parent isn't factored into the CSP.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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That's so weird...cause I remember that my next door neighbour tried to get his payments taken down because they couldn't afford anything for their new kids...I guess maybe because his ex was on welfare they just kinda said, "If you couldn't afford your first two you shouldn't have had two more".

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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Yeah, when my husband's ex's support worker assessed him this year, she took into consideration that he has a son and new daughter. She reduced his payments by about $20-$30 a month. They generally don't take into consideration other dependents unless the payments are causing undue hardships.
I'm guessing my husband's income, considering he supports 3 dependents and his daughter (SPs) that he is considered an exception for undue hardships. :S
I think I better get off my ass and get a job. I feel bad for him! lol

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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although...like you said Jennifer, it does appear to be up to the judge's discression.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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OK...so I'm going to eat a little crow over here. I've been going by what what I was told when I was going through the court system, so I went and looked it up.

It appears that if your ex gets married, that IS a valid reason to pay less support...I'm shocked.

If you are paying or receiving child support, there may come a time when you feel the terms of your support order or domestic contract should be changed. For example,

•your income may change
•your former spouse may remarry
•your child graduates from school and gets a job.
The Family Responsibility Office cannot change any of the terms in your support order or domestic contract. Only the courts can change your order.

How to change a domestic contract

The support payor and the support recipient have to negotiate a new domestic contract with new support terms. The new contract will have to be filed with the Ontario Court of Justice or Superior Court of Justice (Family Court) and then sent to us.

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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He never had to go to court over it either. They just sent him a letter on how much he should be paying after he quit his job.
Now if his ex wfie took him to court.... maybe the outcome would have been different?
But I just can't see them taking away his full $500 welfare check to support his previous payments. He would be homeless and then how the heck would he be able to get a job? lol

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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I imagine it does come down to the judge's discretion whether or not the reasons for the job loss are legit and is entirely based on the individuals situation.

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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I don't know... my uncle quit his job for no good reason and was on welfare. They reduced his payments to $50 a month. (Believe me, he wasn't looking for work either).
I know it does suck in those situations and I doubt anyone would go through the trouble of re applying annually unless they were in dire need. Because as you say, it is a big hassle.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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To an extent that's true...but it's a long and arduous process of proving, not only that you lost your job and it wasn't your fault but ALSO that you are continually still searching for a similar paying job...because too many men just quit their job and go on welfare. You lose your license and then go to jail for that too...It is considered abandonment or refusal to pay.

Jenni - posted on 05/17/2011

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@Laura you are not expected to pay the same amount if you lose your job or are under employed. You have to apply for a reduction, but you are not expected to pay the same.



How would that work if you lost your job and have other dependents? Your entire unemployment payment goes to CS? With nothing left for your other children?

That wouldn't make sense.



It's entirely based on your annual gross income.

My husband and the BM of my SD never went to court but he pays her based on his annual gross income. Her support worker assesses his gross annual income and also takes into consideration he has other dependents. She sends him a letter each year to tell him how much his CSP will be that year.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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yeah...people are so emotional in family court, we often end up coming out telling "interesting" versions of what happened.

My judge told my ex that he should consider settling with me out of court because I appeared to be "being reasonable" and my plan "made sense"...he told everybody he knew that she told him he was going to lose anyways because he was a man, so he might as well go ahead and give me what I want.

??? :/

Jayce - posted on 05/17/2011

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Not sure, Laura. Just repeating what I was hold. I didn't read the other posts, I just jumped right in.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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I'm sure the judge meant that he "has" to "or else" she'd go to jail...which is kinda what I said, no?

Jayce - posted on 05/17/2011

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I haven't read the other posts but this is what a judge told my cousin. He lives in Nova Scotia.

My cousin has custody of his son. His ex is trying to get him back. They had a court date not long ago. The judge asked her if she was paying the ordered support. She said 'yes' but my cousin said she hadn't paid since December. She then said it was because she'd lost her job. The judge asked if that was her boyfriend with her. It was. The judge said that in cases where she's unable to pay the support then the new BF has to pick up the slack.

I don't know all the legalities, I've never been involved with something like this. This is just what my cousin told me.

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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and in Ontario, it's different Jodi, the support is based SOLELY on the father's income...if I make a million a year and he makes 30 000, he'll still have to pay the charted amount for a person who earns 30 000

Isobel - posted on 05/17/2011

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I haven't read everything so sorry if this has already been said...but the woman who said that her ex's new wife was paying is paying now because he was already paying and then lost his job...your child support doesn't go down if you lose your job; you are expected to find a similar job to support your children.

It is his new wife's CHOICE to pay it so he doesn't lose his license or get sent to jail...but they can't come after her for it.

Jodi - posted on 05/17/2011

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Actually, Amanda, in Australia, a mother's income has EVERYTHING to do with the amount of child support paid..... If a woman is paid a million dollars here, and dad is only on $50,000, dad will pay nothing.

Amanda - posted on 05/17/2011

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If a mother chooses not to get a job, its none of your business as the stepmothers. Even if she was paid 1 million dollars a year, your husbands would still be paying the same in child support. Her income has zero factor in what the father pays for the children, because no matter what she makes he still has a legal responsiblity to pay his half (which is decided according to his income).

Emma - posted on 05/16/2011

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Do your research! She's probably just bluffing and doesn't want you to marry her ex. I doubt you'd have to pay a cent, but it may be different here in Australia.

Ashley - posted on 05/16/2011

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congrats on your wedding im in bc and was woundering the same thing as we are planing on getting married too. she dosent work and isint looking so same position im just waiting for her to try, because it isint happining i know she spends that money on everything but my SD.

Lacye - posted on 04/20/2011

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Well since I have first posted this we have gotten married. He's not behind in his child support, it comes out of his check.

His ex does have some nerve though. She has already told us that she's not getting a job at all. I'm just relieved to see so many people saying what I was thinking. It just makes me feel a lot better. Thanks everybody.

S - posted on 04/20/2011

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I'm wondering where some of these responses are coming from. No, they do not factor in your income unless you basically allow them to railroad over you. Even if by some chance your soon to be husband lost his job he could go to court to have the amount reduced although the amount of times you can do this is limited. My source - my girlfriend works for childsupport and I asked her this exact question regarding my brother and his wife. His wife makes more than he does and not a penny of her income is touched, even when he gave up his business and was not working for awhile.



***although I will say his life will be hell if he goes into arears. You would probably prefer to pay to keep him current than allow that to happen. If there are arears they can take your tax refund, seize accounts, as well as prevent him from getting a passport

Veronique - posted on 04/20/2011

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I'm not sure that on a legal stand point that she can even get it. I mean you are not the biological parent here. Here in Canada the it goes by the fathers salary. Even if he marries you the law, here anyway says that she is not intitles to any. Wow some nerves this lady has. Why should you go bust you behind all day at work to support her lazy behind. So nerve people have, tell her to get a clue, oh wait that would intitles her to actually do something in life :)

Amy - posted on 04/19/2011

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nuthing to do w you...there are gf and wifves who do pay because they dont find work and are ten days away from going to jail...so the woman caring bout her bf/d/h will pay. aint no court in the land can make you pay .06 cents to her..i was on state aide...was trying to go to school but as a single mom i had no car or license. so i had to count on cabs paid for from my program. when the cabs run out i had to withdrawn. i did get a job again but it was not for a while. i went 4 years no payment from my ex. while he had cell phones and electrolytically toys...paid for by his older gf. i was at the food bank...so yea getting some money from my ex would of been great... screw her anyway...

Kari - posted on 04/19/2011

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You will not have to pay her. The support obligation will be on the income of the biological father, NOT your combined income. Even if he is not working, the courts can assign him an amount to pay, usually in the amount of $0-$35 per week, if he doesn't pay, the money can add up, but they will not be able to take it from you.

Petra - posted on 01/03/2011

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Support obligations fall solely on the shoulders of the biological/adoptive parents. The only exception I'm aware of (outside matters of consenting to support by step-parents) are when the step-parent cohabited with the custodial parent for a significant period of time such that they acted in a parental capacity for the child and the removal of the income would be detrimental to the child's standard of living. Since your step child does not live with you, this isn't something that would apply to you.

However, I live in Canada and the States have some wonky state-specific statutes in family law. I would put in a call to your family law help center and find out where I stand, if I were you. If this woman has any brains at all, she'll find a way to get to you, if it does exist.

[deleted account]

I think here child support would be based on his income alone. I don't think she can have it raised unless he gets a substantial raise.

Sharon - posted on 01/02/2011

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1. Protect yourself. Keep your income seperate from his with your own checking acct.

2. Maybe you won't legally change your name. I didn't take my husbands last name. his ex-wife has tired every which way to try sink her hooks into my monies. She doesn't know my legal last name, and hasn't been able to. I'm not sure she has the legal right to it but she keeps trying. UGH she's a friggen nightmare.

Isobel - posted on 01/02/2011

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it seems though, that you could get child support from a step parent if they substantially improved the child's standard of living...kinda like alimony



but that's only after a divorce

Isobel - posted on 01/02/2011

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In Ontario, support is based SOLELY on the father's income...it has nothing to do with the spouse's income. That being said...you can't have your child support lowered because you have new children

Amanda - posted on 01/02/2011

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Oh sorry I misread this post! No your income isn't figured in to his support amount! :)

Lacye - posted on 01/02/2011

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Thanks again everybody! Jodi, I will most definitely look into and probably call the number! Thanks so much!

Jodi - posted on 01/02/2011

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Layce, I didn't find the Mississippi info, but from what I HAVE read, she is full of shit.

http://family-law.freeadvice.com/family-...

in many states, there are some requirements that stepparents provide child support. In some cases, those requirements do not kick in unless the custodial parents become unable to support the child. For example, under the Delaware Annotated Code Section 13, Chapter 5 section 501(b): "Where the parents are unable to provide a minor child's minimum needs, a stepparent or a person who cohabits in the relationship of husband and wife with the parent of a minor child shall be under a duty to provide those needs. Such duty shall exist only while the child makes residence with such stepparent or person and the marriage or cohabitation continues."

You could call one of the numbers on this link and ask :) I'm pretty sure they could let you know what your State law is.
http://www.child-support-guide.com/missi...

Shauna - posted on 01/02/2011

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Mabey every state is different. I live in Nebraska and I am married. Child support was set up when me and my husband was already married, my income didnt have anything to do with the childsupport amount. Only his income and her income. ..... And in nebraska if you loose your job you pay 50$ a month not the original amount.

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Lacye, for your own protection, it might be smart to have your own personal checking account WITHOUT your fiance's name on it. So that way he can financially provide for his child without using your combined income. No, a steparent's income is not the deciding factor at all in the monthly check. However, YOUR income can be used as a crutch should you fall on hard times. YOUR income should NOT support HIS child. Sorry to be blunt about it, but child support is solely between mother & father of the child.

Lacye - posted on 01/02/2011

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Thanks a lot ladies!

Jodi, I live in Mississippi in the USA.
Amanda, my soon to be hubby does have a job. I'm talking about can she make me pay her child support even though he has a job. From what the other ladies are saying, no she can't.

Thanks everybody for the advice! I really appreciate it!

Shauna - posted on 01/02/2011

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No, its not true. They dont calculate you *the stepparents* income only your soon to be husbands. Even if your married it goes off of his wages. My husband pays child support to a child we dont even see. *long story* This women sounds like a winner, just like my stepsons mother. I wish you luck, it caused chaos in our lives untill we figured out what was best for the child in our case, not seeing the child is best. good luck on your situation, i cringe at that thought of going through that again!!! in fact i cringe at the fact my husband has to pay income to a women who uses the money to party everyweekend and get new tattoos etc while her x-husband fathers her child. Classy people i tell you.

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