My ex was willing to pay the amount set by the court but

Love - posted on 11/16/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )




My ex was willing to pay the amount set by the court but "under the table" but since i said no he has now lawyed up and is denying the child support process's. should i deny him his visitation with his daughter til he pays up?


[deleted account]

Morally, no, you shouldn't. Legally, you MIGHT be able to get away with it if there is no visitation order in place. But if the father brings it up in court it could lose you any and all favor with the judge. And just to give you something more to think about, I will tell you my firsthand experience with this. My husband had a similar situation with his ex and daughter. His employer paid him mostly under the table at the time my husband was going through the process of establishing paternity and child support. Both my husband and I (I worked at the same place) pleaded with the boss to pay him 100% on the books at least until child support was set so that it would be the right amount. He refused because of how it would affect HIS bookkeeping, and my husband's child support was set at $20/week as a result. He told his ex he would make up the difference each week since he can't control what his boss does and the child support office told him they had to base it off an actual check stub, not his word. She said no and appealed the support order. Family services withdrew their child support order, sent the case to court and specifically told my husband do not give her a dime until it is settled because once they decide an amount they will add up every penny owed between now and then and charge you that in arrears regardless if you have been giving her money all that time. That worried us because at the time we were struggling just to live paycheck to paycheck and couldn't afford to give her that money every week and then have a huge debt of the same amount to pay after the process. His ex lived with her father, was well off and had no bills so he knew good and well that his daughter would not be without her needs met in the meantime, and that his ex WOULD get that contribution from him in a matter of months. So it wasn't like he was just not supporting his child, it would just be delayed and then come all at once. Now, I tell you all that not because I think our situations are the same, but just to explain my husband's reasoning for doing as directed by family services. Financially, he had no choice and knew they had more than their needs met. His ex was beyond pissed off at this and refused to listen when he explained to her several times that she WOULD get his child support money in arrears after the court process. She labeled him a deadbeat, spread rumors, (who knows what was said in front of their child) and refused him access to his daughter until it was settled nearly 10 months later. Here's the part I really hope you will consider:

My husband had been getting his daughter twice a week for visitation from the time she was about 6 weeks old, then suddenly was refused access for 10 months straight. She was just under a year old. In that time, his daughter lost all familiarity with us, our house, our dog, and wasn't around when her half sibling was born. When my husband finally obtained court ordered visitation it was a very rough situation, and still is sometimes now, two and a half years later. She came back to our home scared and upset every single week. The bond she had formed was completely lost. She wanted nothing to do with us, physically bullied our then-6-month old up until he was as big as her, threw hysterical fits every single visitation day over anything, everything, or nothing at all, which she STILL does sometimes, at four years old. She does not show anyone at our house affection and often cringes when anyone else tries to show affection to her. For a very long time she refused to play or even speak much to any of us. She would just sit glaring at us and whining in grunts and moans throughout most of her visits. I have to wonder if all of that is because that original bonding was erased so she is simply not at all well adjusted and has heard a lot of negativity about us. She is just now in the last couple months beginning to adjust and relate to us. It has taken two and half years to even get to the point we're at now, and it is still VERY slow progress, and with some steps backward now and then.

I tell you our story to give a firsthand example of what withholding visitation can do to a child. I don't know how old your child is or what her relationship with her father is like so far, but I CAN tell you, from experience not just opinion, that denying a child that relationship hurts the child FAR more than it's worth for any measly sense of rightness you may gain from "punishing" the father! There is a reason the court looks at child support and visitation as two separate issues. Regardless what you feel the father deserves in the way of relationship with his child, the CHILD deserves to have that relationship not only protected, but ENCOURAGED.

Jodi - posted on 11/16/2012




No. Child support and visitation are two different things. Your child is not a commodity, and should not be treated like she can be rented out for payment. You have no right to deny visitation. And if you have court ordered visitation, you would also be in contempt of court.


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