HomeWorking MothersHow do I successfully get child support lowered?
Posted in Working Mothers on 24th September 2012

How do I successfully get child support lowered?
Ok, so I have a greedy ex-wife who is trying to use me as an ATM. Still finishing up divorce, but last year had our first custody orders / support orders. I make about $ 90 – $ 100k/year. She made about $ 20k/year working for her mother’s business. Prior to last year’s support hearing, her mother “laid her off”, and she presented unemployment income to the court. I gained about 40% custody, and ended up paying almost $ 2,000 per month in combined child / spousal support. Within weeks of the hearing, my ex asked if I could take days off work, because she was going on a business trip for her mother’s business that had magically rehired her. In January or February this year, we exchanged financial disclosures, and I found that she was now making $ 18.50 per hour (up from $ 16 per hour a year earlier, before she was “laid off”).

Per the mediator’s recommendation, we returned a few months ago to modify the custody arrangement, and I now have almost 50/50 custody per the mediator’s report. The judge has yet to adopt the recommendation, but we return to court in two weeks. I asked my ex for a recent pay stub, and instead received an unemployment stub from last month. This is so frustrating. I am going to ask the judge to “impute” income to my ex in the amount of about $ 35k / year. My ex is also asking for attorneys fees (last year the judge laughed at them for the same attorneys fees request due to the large support award). She has not tried to gain any additional employment (though she only works 20-30 hours a week for her mom).

What can I do to stop the bleeding here? Will the imputed income request work? Will the judge see through the games that she is playing?

Frustrated Dad

Best answer(s):

Answer by jeff
Your Attorney must have slept.
YES – Impute is good. My ex quit her job 3 months before divorce…. attorney had NONE of that.
What were her Max earnings, what is she “CAPABLE” of earning. Consider education, location and other support avenues. Might even consider bringing Mom onto the stand to explain the “windfall sources of financing”. Don’t get schlepped.

Answer by NLNorth
FUCK YOU!!!! You are an asshole. Quit whining about your child support.

Answer by Connor
First of all, you may need a better attorney. Your child support amount should be decreased to reflect the fact that you now have 50/50 custody, not 40/60. Second, your wife should not need any spousal support, and I’d bet she was never laid off by her mother. It’s more likely her mother is paying her under the table or has paid her under the table. If I were you, I’d send the IRS an anonymous tip. Make it very clear to your attorney that she is working or has worked and force him/her to find out how much she’s actually working. A decent attorney could also find out how much she’s really making.

Answer by Ranger
It’s hard to say if you’ll be able to get a support modification or not. Usually there has to be a substantial change in circumstances to justify asking for a modification. It sounds like you probably have a case since the number of overnights have changed and her income has changed too.

I don’t know what state you’re from or I would search for a support calculator for your state. I’m from North Carolina and I’ve given you a link to ours here https://nddhacts01.dhhs.state.nc.us/WorkSheet.jsp
Fill it out based on your present circumstances and see what it comes up with and this should give you a good feel for what the support should be.

Here is a link to another child support question I answered a while back that may help too http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=Ak92n.8L9UQictd0N8_JtJTty6IX;_ylv=3?qid=20110207142729AAeEMuk

As for the games she playing… the only way the judge will take the time to see through them is if you carefully lay it all out in a simple concise way that quickly makes sense and doesn’t drone on and on with way too many details. Carefully plan how to present that type of info to the judge and practice it with someone so you don’t come off in a bad light.

Hope this helps and good luck!

Answer by Willa
First ask to be relieved of spousal support. The two issues should be separated. Your attorney should subpoena her bank records to see what she is depositing. You should most definitely ask for an imputed wage be assigned to her. And remember that you will have access to her tax returns for 2011 in April so if she has an income she is hiding, you will win in the end.

Answer by Abusefree
You can only lower child support, if your income has gone down. or if you have the children over night, at least two over nights, you should receive credit off of the child support payment. You need to consult your lawyer about that credit thing with joint custody.

Answer by Y! Groups Dads House Ed. Center
Federal Child Support Enforcement Handbook for Non-Custodial Parents

To learn a father’s rights, join Dads House Educational Center in Yahoo Groups. It’s free to join and access all materials. You also associate with other fathers going through, and have already gone through, the same issues. We have an Educational Manual that teaches everything that needs to be known in addressing your legal issues. Mention your question here when asked why you want to join, as well as your state?
2nd Wife Club in Yahoo Groups, for those brave enough to take on a man with “baggage”.

For 22 years, I have volunteered my time working with divorced/single fathers dealing in family law issues, such as child support, teaching them about what the states are not telling support obligors.

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