1. People & Relationships
Cathy Meyer

Fighting Over Child Support After A Job Loss

By April 2, 2009

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Take a look at this article in the New York Times. I wouldn't want to be in a position of having to ask the court to modify child support due to the loss of a job. Then again, I wouldn't want to be in the position of a custodial parent who will be affected by the loss of sorely needed child support either.

In the article Peter Passidomo, chief of New York State's 125 support magristates says, “We see everything, High income, low income, across the board. It’s just like in an intact family where the income earner has lost the job.”

I can't say that I agree that a reduction in child support relates in anyway to an intact family if a parent loses a job. Imagine the reaction of the court if a married couple went before a judge and ask that their financial obligation to their children be reduced because they lost a job?

The obligation parents in intact families have toward their children are not subject to a court order. It is expected that children will be taken care of whether the family is suffering financially or not.

Once we divorce the courts determine to what degree we are financially obligated to our children and if needed whether we can afford that obligation. I fully understand the need for this and the need for a modification in child support if a parent loses a job.

What I don't understand is why any parent feels a roof over their head and food on their table is more important than the same for their children. Isn't a child's lifestyle more important than the lifestyle of the parent paying child support?

I'm a non-custodial parent. For years I've worked two jobs. At one time I was working three jobs just so I could provide for my two children. And, I was receiving child support. When I read articles like this I can't help but put myself in the shoes of the custodial parent.

For instance, the mother who is raising three teenagers and has now had the child support she receives reduced from $686 a month to $50. Yes, non-custodial parents who have lost a job need a break but, where does that mother go for assistance.

Her obligation hasn't changed and whether she loses a job or not she still has three teenagers to provide for. Is there a court somewhere that will modify the responsibility she has to her children?

April 4, 2009 at 1:22 pm
(1) David Love says:

I, David Love, who committed adultery, would like to share what damage this caused in my life over 36 years. I was only 20yrs old at the time, but carrying this guilt and shame, contributed to a drug addicted life. If you are in adultery, you must stop, confront and handle the situation, before you can move forward in a happy relationship and life. Until you do so, you will be in bondage to where you are at right now in your life. Thank you, and have a good life…….David Life

April 6, 2009 at 3:53 pm
(2) Petula says:

It’s a scary thing to have the amount you’re required to pay and/or receive determined by someone else. We don’t have a divorce decree yet and I’m just hoping for child support payments on a regular basis for an amount that provides for my children.

April 6, 2009 at 7:03 pm
(3) John says:

The author made the point that one wouldn’t cut back on the children in an intact relationship. The point that the author is missing is that in an intact relationship, a home is being shared and the working spouse may pick up some extra OT to keep the family going. Also, Unemployment insurance may be enough to keep the family going. On the other hand, it may be very difficult if not impossible for one of the single parents to be able to support themselves if unemployment should arise, not even being able to contribute to support the children. Not a good situation. I’m in it myself right now. Enough guilt for everyone.

April 6, 2009 at 7:21 pm
(4) suzy says:

My ex-husband hasn’t paid child support since December. I am working two jobs to support our four children which I have full custody of. He has chosen not to work to his full potential because he’s depressed that his girlfriend dumped him. The two were having an affair while they were both married. All he keeps saying to me is that he can’t work because he’s depressed. What am I supposed to do with my mounting bills for four kids. He makes sure he has an apartment, food and liquor.

April 6, 2009 at 10:25 pm
(5) Linda says:

I don’t agree that the non-custodial parent is not thinking about his/her children if there is a need to reduce child support. It is not more important for the non-custodial parent to have more than a roof over his/her head or food on his/her plate. Possibly, the non-custodial parent would also like to have a home for his children to come ‘home’ to when he/she has them for visitation. That is why there is a % of income that has been calculated by the government that is considered appropriate support for the children. It is a tough economy…everyone has to cut back.

April 7, 2009 at 12:28 pm
(6) JRB59 says:

Both parents have an obligation support their children. While one parent pays the other, it’s really paying the difference, with the custodial parent paying herself. What standard do we apply when custodial parents loose their jobs or voluntarily stop working? Why would a different standard apply to the non-custodial parent?

In an intact family, if there is a job loss or change in income everyone in the family suffers. Everyone has to tighten their belts. There are things that were once expected that can be come nice to haves or even out of the question. I don’t see why with the same income sources the same shouldn’t be true for divorced families. It sucks, but in most cases, people don’t choose to get laid off.

To say that the support should stay the same, ignores reality. Child support is calculated based on both parents incomes. The reality is that that money was never earned, so how can it be paid? This is a serious question because not paying is a criminal act.

April 7, 2009 at 1:19 pm
(7) shelly says:

In a relationship where there is love, honesty, trust, respect and mutual harmony, there would be no arguements of doing/providing for the children. Divorce far from any pretense of harmony; its not nice. In many cases the parent that has to pay plays game$, using their ‘poor me’ and children as pawns as to get back at the custodial parent — it seems to be almost a natural instinct. It has been my observation and experience (and I’m sure I’ll catch alot of flack) that it is the dad’s that play this game more often … perhaps it is because they are narcisstic or have more money power. Yes, I’m sure that there are some who are on hard times and really, really trying but there are too many that play the game$. Been there as the ‘pawn child’ and have had it used used by my children’s father as a game tactic.

April 8, 2009 at 9:03 pm
(8) Petula says:

I really like your divorce support blog and e-course. In the “Tips to help you move on after divorce,” you suggest getting a roommate. Are there any safe resources that help single mothers find other single moms who are interested in this? Thanks.

April 11, 2009 at 4:34 pm
(9) Hannibal Barca says:

First of all, beyond anything else, I am not sure who wrote this article! For had they researched the issue thoroughly, it would have been crystal clear even to a 4 year old that, a roof over ones head, food on the table are important factors for one to live, function and operate within his/her society (basic needs). Generally speaking and from the articles perspective, it is my strong belief that, this article is geared towards man especially during these excruciating financial times. How do you pay with money you don’t have? What draconian approach to an already rotting system is this? If one looses a job, is laid off then payments should be calculated against his new income just as I am sure, if one gains a higher paying job, no complains or articles stating that it is wrong to raise the child support based on one’s new income. The coin is two-sided; don’t accept one side that benefits and not the other one. Perhaps, if our leaders dealt with this issue and stopped hiding behind votes, we would have a stable system that would evenly distribute the parenting responsibilities as well as wealth. Instead, the fabric of our nation which is heavily founded on family continues to deteriorate at an alarming rate and yet we offer these “Robin Hood- go rob to pay” articles as an attempt to come to an amicable solution.

April 11, 2009 at 5:15 pm
(10) Bonespur says:

I just went through the same ordeal. My ex had been out of work since September. We have two daughters that are in college. One lives away on campus, and one lives at home with me.

He told me in February that he was going to file for a reduction in support and percent of expenses if he did not get a F/T job by March. I spent many sleepless nights wondering how I was going to manage. What would happen to the difference in percentage of expenses? Where would that be made up? I cannot cover what he cannot afford to pay.

The clincher is that he is now in a dual income household as of January. His new spouse can support both of them and I know this for a fact based on what she told my ex-MIL. He is very willing to allow his kids to be cut short, but he has a roof over his head and meals on the table because someone else is able to take care of him.

Thank goodness he found a job.

April 12, 2009 at 4:18 am
(11) Jack non-custodial says:

I couldn’t help shaking my head in disbelief to the author’s comment. My Question is :Cathy are you out of your mind? Are you living in this planet? The government is so unable to provide assistance to those who are in need, thus uses all the power they have to abuse the non-custodial parents by dragging and forcing them to make outrageous monthly payments to the custodial parent, which by law has the right to spend the hard earned money received by the non-custodial parent which ever way they comfortable doing. The custodial parents now a days (mostly females) have tremendous amount of powers obtained from the government to abuse the non-custodial parents. Everyday you see thousands of non-custodial parents going to jail, having their license suspended and humiliated in front of their co-workers being arrested. If there is one true effect it has it is simply the destruction and segregation of the non-custodial parents with their own children. Those that suffer the most are the children. More murders now a days on the rise due to this. The fact is there more and more non-custodial parents that have become incapable of creating another family due to the constant strain and burdenship created by the forceful payment of child support. women now a days use child support as a weapon to destroy a man’s life. This non-sense has to stop. Men need to support their children. They should not be enriching the ex-wife or ex-girl friend. That means the system needs to be changed where payments are made or deposited toward a trust fund, not delivered to the hand of the mother where she is allowed to spend the money which ever way she feels. This nonsense has to be stopped.

April 13, 2009 at 12:56 pm
(12) Ginger says:

Jack – are you on CRACK? How is child support going to be deposited into a trust fund if the money is needed now to put food on the table? Be logical. Whatever the custodial parent spends the money on – the non-custodial parent’s concern should be ONLY that their children are clothed, fed, and that there is a roof over their kid’s heads. That’s it. It is the responsibility of the non-custodial parent to still provide for their offspring. End of story! And yes, after they are 21 – guess what – you still have to help them with college expenses. That is our job as parents – whether child support is legally due to them or not.

April 13, 2009 at 3:30 pm
(13) Cathy Meyer says:

“That means the system needs to be changed where payments are made or deposited toward a trust fund, not delivered to the hand of the mother where she is allowed to spend the money which ever way she feels. This nonsense has to be stopped.”

The only thing nonsensical is the belief that so many non-custodial fathers have that their ex wives are living hign on the hog due to their child support.

My ex thought that his very small amount of child support every month should provide his child the sun and the moon. What he paid in child support was a drop in the bucket when compared to what it actually took to raise the child.

You would think though, if you listened to my ex that it covered the mortgage, car payments, groceries…everything. It took thousands of dollars a month for my ex to maintain his lifestyle but for some reason he thought I was living quite well on his $800 a month in child support.

I think it is funny how far he thought that little bit of money would stretch!

Jack, you need to rethink this issue. Once that child support changes hands it becomes your ex wives money to spend as she sees fit. It is no longer your money and you no longer have any input unless you can prove that your children are doing without so that she can live the high life.

If you could prove that you would have gone to court and done something about it. Instead you are posting on blogs and I have a feeling the true problem is a control problem on your part.

You can’t separate your negative feelings for your ex from the fact that it is partly your responsibility to help support your children. That is an issue you need to work on.

As for not being able to create another family because you have an obligation to the children you created in your first family…that is just life. Your obligation is to the children you have now. If that interferes with your desire to sire more children then you should suffer the consequences, not your children or your ex.

April 15, 2009 at 10:59 am
(14) pazzeo says:

The article is empathetic and well structured, but oversimplistic. If it is true that intact families do not have the welfare of their children tied to a court order, it is also true that, should one of the parents lose his/her job, more or less severe adjustments would be necessary.
Most States have charts, updated yearly, that outline how much a family with so many kids, with a gross income adding to the combined income of the two, divorced parents, should make. This total is then divided by the portion that makes up the income of the non-custodial parent, and that total is the mandated child support.
When the non-custodial parent loses his/her job, adjustments are made on the basis of the new, albeit temporary, income. The custodial parent has to adjust daily expenses and made due, as does the non-custodial parent.
When things improve, the non-custodial has a duty (by law and by principle) to inform the other parent, and to adjust the child support payment.
This mimics what happens in intact families.
I don’t see what the problem is. Those here who post that the non-custodial parent is living large, just because the support has been modified, are lying to themselves. I lost my job and modified support, but also sold my car, stopped eating out and use all the money I have to pay mortgage, child support and utilities.
The problem lies with those who try to cheat the system. These exists whether or not the system allows for modifications, and (surprise!) exists on both sides of the fence: the paying party and the receiving party.
Let’s now be blind and oblivious to the fact that this is reality.

April 24, 2009 at 8:11 pm
(15) Brenda says:

I am divorced with two kids and have a support order in place for a set amount. This amount was determined by a judge and granted in my divorce. He was recently arrested for failure to pay support and charged with four felonies. He goes to court and pays toward arrears but does not pay current support to me. Since being arrested, he has re-married and is trying to have his support obligation reduced. This order has been in place for 8 years and he has never requested modification until now. I want to know if the support amount granted in my divorce can be modified by CSE to his benefit. He claims he makes $525 a month. His obligation amount exceeds that and was based on his earnings when we divorced. I am currently out of work and have 1/6 of my regular income. I used the child support calculator in attempt to determine how the changes in our incomes would affect my kids. I was shocked to learn that the less income I earn, the less support my ex is obligated to pay. How can my loss of income benefit him, the system is NOT FAIR. Someone please give me advise on what I can do to benefit my kids and myself in this situation. Thank you.

April 25, 2009 at 1:25 pm
(16) Lyn says:

To David Love-thank you for your obvious heartfelt words. I hope that others listen and that you find the peace that you need to make positive choices forward.

Regarding the post, I have a soon to be ex, who left and filed for divorce. He is the noncustodial father of our 3 boys. He chose to go from $65,000 a year to $34,000 so that he “would not have to pay much support.” The cheater is shacked up with someone from his past, and driving a new truck worth as much as our house. My kids are at the mercy of the court order of lower support, while he is living high on the hog. What a mess.

May 29, 2009 at 3:27 pm
(17) ML says:

Hold on folks. I pay child support and it is hefty. Since I began paying child support – my ex (we were never married) bought a house (at the top of the market I might add), purchased a new car while I just try to get by. So as a saver and a person who sees the real value of things, It kills me to see someone getting a constatnt tax free check each month purchasing new & useless things (shall I say WI, among others) and throw deposit bottles away while I do the right thing and return these to get my 5 cents back. Obviously she/my daughter doesn’t need the money that much or maybe they would learn the art of returning deposit bottles for money and caring about the environment at the same time. I caould give more glaring examples but clearly support is much more than support.

June 3, 2009 at 12:52 pm
(18) Alice says:

I think every situation is different. I am a custodial parent I have 55% custody. I also unfairly pay child support. I provide 100% of the financial obligations for my kids medical, health, dental, education and nutrition, not to mention any and all extracurricular activities. Yey my paycheck is still garnished for child support even though he owes me more in expenses. All because he chooses not to work to his potential and lies about his income. He also happens to be a paralegal, remarried with a dual income home, in fact they have four incomes because they both collect child support with less than 50% custody. I pay all expoenses and send him bills and receipts but never see a dime. Going back to court cost more money than the measily reduction I get to pay the expenses. So I live close to the poverty level while they live it up, why because I am responsible and have been able to keep a job for 20 years. How fair is that. So I think before yo judge someone for asking for a reduction the whole picture should be looked at. Our kids should not carry a dollar sign over their heads.

June 9, 2009 at 3:51 pm
(19) Clint says:

A none custodial parent still paying is one thing. What about when you have shared custody, with the same amount of overnights,responsibilties,and daily obligations. The courts still order the higher earned income to pay child support. So what is fair when the higher earned income loses their job. I think its fair to get help from the other parent now.

June 24, 2009 at 4:27 pm
(20) Jean says:

Not much here about shared custody and job loss. We have shared custody, 45/65 (I have 65% ) and my ex lost his job. In the Divorce, support was left open. Now he wants support from me. Even though he lives with his folks and pays NO BILLS. I’m serious. None. While I still pay the same bills that we always had in our home.
I should sell my house so he can buy cigarettes and maintain his “lifestyle”. Who is kidding whom here? Do you think all of this money than he will get for her will go to her benefit? I do realize many parents; both custodial and non-custodial do not think of the children first. But is this really thinking of the child?

July 6, 2009 at 10:50 am
(21) Tara says:

The mother should strip or hook ;)

July 29, 2009 at 9:42 am
(22) Todd says:

I’m a non-custodial father that once owned a successful business while taking care of my daughter in order to avoid expending the extra money for daycare. When our economy shifted, my business took a huge hit and I eventually had to close its doors. Needless to say, I continued to take care of my daughter and watch her during the day. While doing so, the mother of my little girl filed for child support.

That left me in a really bad predicament. I didn’t know whether I should continue to watch my baby (whom I love dearly), while facing the fact of that I have to pay child support, or what to do? Her actions totally took me by surprise.

While signing the documents executing the child support order, I tried to explain (to the courts) my financial situation as well as the arrangement that was pre-established between the mother and I. No one accepted my plea for help and my cries fell on deaf ears.

Now that the mother is receiving child support, she never purchases any food for my daughter and constantly uses the money to purchase household appliances, televisions, and clothes, ect.

I have been to 3 attorney’s that have told me that there is nothing that I can do about the situation because she could say that she is using the money for the benefit of the child, which she’s not.

Now, when I pick my little girl up, she eats so much as a result of being hungry because her mother is not using the money for the purpose of what child support was intended for.

So, I disagree with most of what you’ve mentioned above. You have allot of custodial parents that are using the system to maintain their lifestyle and to fill their pockets. Our children are the victims in this situation.

I am a very loving Dad, and am considering pursuing law school in order to make some dearly needed changes to our system. There should be some kind of physical accountability as to where the child support money is being spent. Receipts need to be mandatory every month and presented to the courts that established the initial mandate.


October 27, 2009 at 9:51 am
(23) kevin7up says:

Folks, my wife accused me of being mentally-ill and violent for “10 to 12 years”, and so in fear for her life. The Court required no evidence of these allegations prior to issuing its Temporary Restraining Order which removed me from the family, home and six children, during my 35 days of radiation therapy and major surgery for cancer. Since the day I was forced out of the family home over three years ago, due to child support transfers of my earnings, I have never been “positive” financially. I am now unemployed and have a new form of cancer which I cannot afford to address due to earnings transfers. I continue to pay child support even though I cannot afford either a roof over my head or food, and when my medical insurance runs out next month, medication necessary to preserve my life will be inaccessible as well. I have been back to the Court as often as possible, with no positive outcome for the children or for their father. What will they do without their dad? I’m sure they’ll survive. They will just have to suck up their loss and move on. It is a great country, the land of the free and the home of the brave. If you are right — fight, fight, fight — against the corrupt U.S. divorce industry run primarily in the best interests of attorneys, judges and their fellow travelers. Best to all.

October 27, 2009 at 7:51 pm
(24) Patricia says:

I think that, whether its the mother or father who is asking for child support just does not get it. I think instead of asking for child support, SUPPORT YOUR BABIES AND YOURSELF…YOURSELF!!! I am an independent woman whose father, yes can see his kids when he wants but Ill be damned if I have him supporting me. Is’nt this the right thing to do, DO it yourself.. be string and standup and show that you yourself can take care of your kids instead of getting it from someone else. Very sad that somw woman (or men) go to court to try to get money for their kids when in all reality they are yours to stand up for yourself and make it on your own. In the end I think your kids will appreciate it more that you were able to do it yourself.

November 20, 2009 at 12:25 pm
(25) Rick says:

What about a situation where I have two children from different relationships. I have custody of my oldest who is 10 and my youngest is 3 and lives with her mother. My support was set based on a $100K job which I was laid off in May. I have not found anything comparable since. I am unable to reduce my support but am not working. My 10 year old suffers because we lost income and my 3 year old will still get full support based on $100K??

How does that make sense? I am not trying to stop support but I am also responsible for another child that lives with me!!

December 3, 2009 at 10:23 am
(26) Robert says:

Everyone: My story is simple. My ex-wife had an affair with a (former) friend of mine. Went on for months. Previously I had an income that allowed her to work only part time, to be home for our 3 children, 8, 9 and 13. For years (16) she only worked part time, passing up full time opportunities. When the economy caused me to loose my job, use savings and nest eggs to pay off all debt, except for house and cars.. I asked her to look for a full time job to help. Instead, she filed for divorce under the pretense of “too many arguments about money/verbal abuse”. I was shocked.. served through a car window, by her, in a parking lot.. anyway, before the court date the affair was exposed.. HE called me and confessed, then she did. This was 18 months ago. I lost my job and have been recieving unemployment benefits for a year, interviewing daily, with no job still. I pay 1200/mth in child support (3 children). My benefits were 1420/month. I gave her 100% and took nothing. Lived with my parents (I’m 39). She won the house and one car in the decree. She would not pay the mortgage or the note. They were in MY name. I am still obligated to pay those, regardless of the decree. I filed a bankruptcy. Lost my job. She gets engaged, moves out.. bankruptcy dismissed for non-payment (no income) I lose house, MY car (the one I was driving because it was the only thing in OUR name and she wouldnt release it to me) she keeps the other one.. and gets married.. she works part time, 400/mth income (minimum level for Ga.) and refuses to work more for our kids. My benefits just ran out.. I haven’t been hired anywhere yet.. but, she is threatening to have me locked up. I can’t afford an attorney now.. so, her families deep pockets and her new spouse have me over a barrell.. NOT TO MENTION, THAT I HAVE MY CHILDREN EVERY OTHER WEEKEND AND THEY ARE DISTRAUGHT AT HEARING THEIR MOTHER DISCUSS OPENLY WANTING TO LOCK UP THEIR FATHER… WTH?? Yes, laws need to be changed. Non custodial parents, your responsibility is to pay the support, into that household to take care of your children.. Custodial parents, your responsibility is to do the same. In my state, as in most, if you have a male appendage, you are out of luck… I HAVE LOST EVERYTHING… and regardless of the morons that post your childrens lives are most important.. it will have NO SUBSTANCE without both parents.. especially when I have gone above and beyond to support them… I miss my children and she still schedules things for them on MY weekends.. it’s an ongoing battle… so, a blanket statement for the non-custodial parents NOT doing their part.. is not only offensive.. but it’s down right ignorant. Thank you, Robert

January 21, 2010 at 3:58 am
(27) Tom says:

I pay over 70% of my income to my ex for my kids, is that right ? NO. I live in an efficiency apartment 210 Sq ft and drive a 21 year old car that barely runs, is that right ? NO. My ex drives a 2009 Lexus and lives in a 500,000 dollar home that I pay for.. The truth is that the system is very biased AGAINST non custodial parents, I didnt want to be one, I had no choice, I could have waled into court with video of my ex smoking crack while turning tricks in the living room while the kids slept and they would not have taken the kids form her…. the system sucks, it is a wonder that more judges and lawyers dont get shot.

February 3, 2010 at 3:25 am
(28) Janie says:

So let me ask this. Should the non-cus parent be homeless and if not able to find work in this country during a recesiion after moving to many states for work that a company then goes out of business and there is nothing left….the child support came out of the paycheck from the start. So let me also add the mother refuses to get a job, got remarried and he works a cash job and they get welfare, SSDI, housing assistance, child care assistance, foodstamps and medicaid (because SHE refuses to use the insurance we still provide (per court order without fail) through the union hall……she refuses to use it because then she has to pay a co-pay….she uses the money when she gets it to go out drinking (takes an autistic child with MR into a bar so she can get drunk with her girls) she buys weed and comments on her myspace page about it….has tons of photos of her out drinking and throwing parties….but again let me remind you SHE and her husband (who the state belives is a roommate) do not “work” how is all that paid for??? So my husband and I were living in a CAR with out child for a week ….. is that NOT a cause for a reduction in child support???? He used to make 47.50 an hour and now we have lost our home, cars, even clothing we sold to make ends meet and pay for gas we are currently living in a HOTEL that my mother in law is paying for because for the last 18 over 1500 men are out of work in the union hall and not ONE hall is taking travelers…a plumbing job off craigslist here and there is how we are making it…they even took his unemployment out of 200 a week we got 100 of it…nice huh….so your theory about the supporting the kid first before the parent has a roof over their head…I will say we had our daughter when things were fine and good in our life and she was planned…the other child was a result of a drunken night claiming she was protected…and he dumped her becasue she was cheating on him…she came back claiming she was preggers…and then he was born early so my hubby signed to papers claiming he was the parent so the kid would be taken care of with health insurance….now the State of MO says even with the DNA test saying eh is NOT his he is still responsible for him….they cannot “bastardize” a child (even though the mom has a NEW HUSBAND) hello….tax dollars at work…child support used to be a good thing until it became a lifestyle choice for the deadbeat custodial MOTHERS

February 4, 2010 at 12:50 pm
(29) CDL says:

Manditory child support is a crock that costs the taxpayers 9 billion a year. perhaps that money would be better spend helping custodial parrents and leave people who’ve already lost their children to the courts finances alone. In most cases child support is just used as a weapon by the custodial parrent, as a means to create friction by lawers who profit from conflict, and it hurts our children far more then it helps them.

March 12, 2010 at 8:59 pm
(30) Lisa says:

















March 15, 2010 at 6:47 pm
(31) Mary says:

I’ve got a question for the parents who read this blog.

Situation: I am the custodial parent of a child who’s father lost his state job (he was told to resign) and now is taking me to court to have child support reduced. The order has been the same since my child was in diapers. Many years later, I have not had the order changed and now he wants to pay me even less than before. Not only that, he never invoked the visitiation he so desperately took me to court for (ever) and he gets to claim our child every other year on taxes. Meanwhile, I’ve been taking care of a child based on support that was established 5 years ago. Is now the time to ask the court to drop some of the visitation and income tax verbage that was used in the first place? I’m not agruing the fact the he will make less money now and regardless of what the circumstances are, I cannot do anything about his salary. However, I think there should be a fair trade. Please let me know what you think.

March 31, 2010 at 12:50 pm
(32) monica says:

People please letss think about this in a marriage when one person loses thier job your right you cant go to court and ask for a reduction. But when you are married there is a partner to help pick up the slack. when you loose your job and pay child support, you are suppose to maintain that childs “lifestyle” there are married couples where everyone works and they cant maintain that “lifestyle” and when that happens no one takes away thier driver lic. or throw interest on them

May 5, 2010 at 11:51 pm
(33) billie says:

So my custodial raised my child support right after I lost my job. The enforcement agency based the new amount on my “potential” to make that salary in the future. Yes folks I said potential. (Now keep in mind that I cannot file for a review for reduction for 3 years!) Also keep in mind I have paid faithfully for 14 years prior to losing my job.

I have yet to find another job and used to make 60,000 per year. Its been almost 2 years. Because evidently the pressure of the economy and job loss are not enough, my past due child support is posted on my credit report which goes really far toward promoting my ability or “potential” to get a job at that level. (This is clearly discrimination and should be considered illegal but that is a whole other blog). They also threaten on about a 90 day basis to suspend my drivers license, yet another sensible approach to promoting employment.

Now here is the icing on the cake. My daughter does not even live there anymore! She is 17 and has moved out on her own. She has a part-time job and a roommate and is finishing high school, looking forward to college. (She has to do that because since I have been unable to find a job, (any job, not just one that pays 60,000) I am now homeless and staying with friends still being charged monthly for support on a 60,000 salary and my child is not even there! It just keeps racking up! I have to get a lawyer… I am freaking homeless!!! I can’t afford a lawyer!

So due to an unexpected job loss, my life and my ability to care for my child is basically dust.

I say all this to say that I understand that measures should be in place to manage the situation but come on government employees! Can we not apply a smidgen of common sense to the situation to separate the dead beats from the folks that have had unexpected job loss? I bet there are a few unemployed rocket scientists out there that might be able to help you out a little bit if you think its just too complicated!

Sorry, I digress. Is just a very touchy subject. I would also like to say that if anyone has any information on a government agency designed solely and specifically to serve me – the non-custodial parent – that would be great! And to anyone who says that its about the kids… well you are just naive.

May 6, 2010 at 12:02 am
(34) Billie says:

If you read my previous comment, I just wanted to add also that aside from being an unemployed non-custodial parent who has paid faithfully for 14 years – I am also a woman.

June 2, 2010 at 11:28 pm
(35) Andi says:

My husband is paying out 50% of his unemployment in chils support to his ex and now I have just recently become unemployed as well for the first time in 21 years. We have 2 children here at home that we are struggling to support with half of his income supporting the other 2 and the mother has not worked a single day since the support order was issued. I understand that he is obligated to support his children and I have never had a problem with the money- I just wonder why it is that they can order him or pay and threaten arrest if he falls behind, but she doesn’t have to do anything. Her excuse for not working is that she just doesn’t feel like it

August 9, 2010 at 5:34 pm
(36) Anonymous says:

Any thoughts/advise on my predicament: I’m a single father raising a son whose mother left us for another man some time ago. She has paid a small amount of child support regularly since then. Recently, on a visitation with her and the stepfather, my child was physically abused. This resulted in a state agency investigation of her and placement of her name on the state’s Child Maltreatment Registry. This resulted in the loss of her job. Now she is approaching the court to suspend her child support payments while she is unemployed. Meanwhile, she and her husband are living in a house that he owns in his name while my son and I live in a duplex and rely on her nominal child support to pay the rent. Any thoughts/advice?

August 30, 2010 at 5:50 pm
(37) Zappoblappo says:

Anonymous: Even though she’s lost her job due to the child abuse charge, you should still be able to get some child support from her. In many states, they’ll “impute” her income as if she were employed full time. If she doesn’t have any skills or education, this will be at least the prevailing minimum wage. If she’s not actively looking for a job, you should also be able to have her declared voluntarily unemployed that will likely result in an imputation of her income. You should consult with a lawyer to have the child support order drawn up correctly to ensure it’ll pass the Trial Court’s muster. Good luck!

September 10, 2010 at 12:40 am
(38) Marcuss says:

What a terrible article. First, the statement of working 2-3 jobs fails to point out those are clearly part time jobs with little to no custody to begin with, which is clearly a bad choice on the writer in the first place. Second, the example of $600 going down to $50 for three teenagers is extreme. When someone making $115k is paying $2100 a month for 3 kids and that job falls under and they end up making $80k, there should definately be a different support amount made. I don’t know where we got off thinking it costs so much to raise kids, but it’s ridiculous. I have full custody of 3 kids and if given $2100, I could almost be a stay at home single parent. If the parents are still married and either one loses a job, the entire family needs to adjust and that includes every facet down to the children. This is common sense people, come on…

September 22, 2010 at 1:09 am
(39) toot says:

Well, if the mother can’t cope with raising the child when the support is reduced from $800 to $50, hand over the child to someone (father) who can do it without complaining.

September 29, 2010 at 3:08 pm
(40) bob says:

return the benz

October 18, 2010 at 1:47 pm
(41) Arianna says:

What if the mother took everything away what before belongs to both and what the father spent 22 years working in. 2 houses, all the spare money, numismatic collection, old and valuable paintings. She earns more than 200 000 a year and wants still to be paid. On the other hand she doesn’t take care of the children. The father (non custodial) has to buy the clothes for them, She cook for her and her husband but not for her children. She uses the clothes of her daughter because she is not allowed to ow anything neither. How to proof that she is not a good mother. the magistrate in Miami dismiss the case because he had no lawyer and said that he can not proof anything (he can not pay for a lawyer) and on the other hand how do you proof emotional abuse?. And what if I have no job. the father want the children living with him. Doesn’t matter if she pays support or not. He has being “the mother” since they are on this earth and now they have nobody to protect them, the mother let her new whatever beat her child and the father can do nothing because everything is taken as manipulation to get the custody. But it seems impossible in the new society to believe that a Father can be the mother…

November 15, 2010 at 1:36 pm
(42) Matt Hawkins says:

I am requesting legal assistance or at least a referral on the issue of child support abuse. I have paid when I had work but I have been unemployed for several years and I cannot pay now but the interest keeps piling up on me. I owe them $24K according Illinois and $16K according to Virginia and I cannot tell which one is right. Also, the custodial parent filed a “no contact” order without me being present or aware of the filing despite my ex-wife knowing exactly where I was.

Further, I do not have the money to retain a big time lawyer to handle this for me and I want to know if there is any help for me or should I just resign myself to the fact that this system is not fair and I have to leave the country or accept its terms. For the record my wife had another man’s baby while I was in Desert Storm, tried to blame it on me, and that is why we were not together. How is it that I should continue to be punished by this person because I cannot afford an expensive lawyer?

November 17, 2010 at 8:58 pm
(43) Breck says:

I think most of you on this post are just wining and looking at things through your own colored glasses. Please grow up, for your childen’s sake. My ex was a millionaire and due to our lifestyle, we choose to bring 3 children into this world. Fast forward, we divorced and he now refuses to work. He thinks he is an entrepreneur -yet his new company is not making money. A responsible, caring man would be an entrepreneur on the side and continue to work for the childrens sake. Interesting how the majority of married men are all working, supporting their children, paying their mortgages and taking their families on vacations. It appears that this economy has an agenda of its own and does not want to employ men who have to pay support. Very interesting. When you bring childen into this world – they should be your first priority – period. And the man who actually said – I cannot afford to start a new family – should be castrated. You don’t get to screw up and then feel you are entitled to a “do over”. Love your children more than yourself.

December 1, 2010 at 10:23 am
(44) Downward spiral of society says:

The system should look at the reasons for divorce and the reason asked for it and then determine if it is justified before preceeding. The courts are awarding lotteries to custodial parents and putting non-custodial parents into modern day slavery to which they do not have the ability to have quality time with their childeren which means a roof over their head when they visit, food to to eat and the funds to be active with their childeren just as much as the custodial parent. That is what is in the best interest of the childeren. The courts should persue justice for the non-custodial parent as hard as they do for child support for the custodial parent. The system is broken and all there is to be said until they get their heads out of their @%^*?.

January 6, 2011 at 10:47 am
(45) linda says:

I never realized how the support laws had changed until my son had to start paying…Unfortunately my eyes have been opened, the laws have changed so much that it now makes more sense for a young woman to simply walk away from a relationship than to try to get over the humps and bumps and move forward as a family. It is to her benefit to simply take the father for child support. The young woman keeps her home her children her income and receives a portion of the fathers income as well along with claiming head of household and child tax credits. In my sons case working a low paying job has allowed him to pay child support and move home with me because he cant afford his own place any longer. He can’t look forward to a nice income tax check to try and save enough to move forward either. What are his options? To continue to struggle and live at home with his mother…Not to mention he sees his children whenever she feels he can since he doesnt make enough to take her to court to enforce visitation rights. So while he tries to do the right thing by his children he has no home, a piece of crap vehicle and pretty much no life. She on the other hand has a better job than him, a new vehicle once the child support started, the blessing of their two children 24/7 , the funds to have her hair done, her nails done, a tanning salon and all the other little extra’s one can be blessed with in life. He gets to work and worry that once again he may be layed off and then behind in child support again, he gets to beg her to allow him to see his kids sometime in the future, christmas and new years were out of the question since she had plans…I can not even begin to explain how unfair this whole system has become…

February 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm
(46) max says:

OK listen everyone. We all have views on what we feel is right and wrong. Truth being told I have full custody of my son who is 8 and from a previous relationship. I just left my ex and filed for 50/50 and won. 2 months later I was terminated from my job for looking up furniture when I left my ex. My companies email should have been used only for work related instances. Now I put in for a modification for support and my ex who got pregnant by another man,this is the reason I left. Now my ex says its her goal to take me down and says stuff such as “when you die I am going to spit on your grave” I love my kids and don’t want to take away from anyone I just want a civil relationship and my support lowered a little. I make six dollars less an hour and I would like just a little understanding

February 15, 2011 at 2:12 pm
(47) mike goeke says:

The government is in every aspect of our lives. People have a right to deal with their families. Child support became a nightmare when the national organization for women strong armed politicians. Now mostly dad’s can’t afford to do anything with their kids after hey pay the extortion rates to women.

February 28, 2011 at 11:06 am
(48) BothEnds says:

I have been on both ends. The receiving end and the spouse of a man that had to pay. After watching the horrible struggle of my husband who had two children by a woman he was never married to, I know how awful it can be. I don’t care what situation the mother is in. A man needs to be able to take care of himself. Even if he is an ass. I watched my husband struggle to pay support that was impossibly expensive. I saw him lose his job and his support never be amended and jailed for 30 days because of it. He could never get ahead. He was only 14 when she got pregnant and she was almost 18. She wouldn’t marry him. She went to school on his dime then got married, and her husband made plenty of money while we practically starved to pay our bills. My husband and I had a child together, but are now divorced. He has a nice job now and I have nothing and I still cannot see robbing him blind. If a woman has three TEENAGERS. They need to get a JOB!! For god’s sake people, this world does not OWE you anything. People are capable of much more than they put the effort into. I don’t care who you are. We can all do better. I am struggling horribly. Don’t expect someone else to take care of you. Things like this happen every day. We are aware of it and yet when it happens to us, we sit and say…Well I didn’t see that coming. I’m so helpless. No you’re not. So, you can’t go out to eat anytime you want, you have to buy generic food labels, or cut down on how many packs of cigarettes you smoke a day. Or whatever it may be. Life is hard enough as it is and no one should have to be responsible for someone else’s comfort. I know many don’t agree with me. My ex doesn’t give me nearly enough to help out, but hey, I knew this could possibly be a situation I might face. I should have been better prepared and not been so dependent on someone else for my needs. If you supply your own needs, you don’t have to worry about it. Being able to have a child should not entitle you to a free ride.

March 1, 2011 at 9:27 am
(49) Cathy Meyer says:

“I should have been better prepared and not been so dependent on someone else for my needs.”

BothEnds, child support is not meant to provide for your needs. Child support is paid so the child can be provided for. it is both your and your ex husband’s responsibility to provide for your child.

If your ex is not paying child support according to state guidelines it is your responsibility to hold him accountable. You may feel it is OK for you to struggle but your child should not have to struggle. As a result he is due to your skewed belief system when it come to child support.

You say your ex got a girl pregnant when he was 14 and then she went to school on “his dime.” I’m going to call you on that one.

I’ve put a son through college and no way did a 14, 15, 16, 17 year old boy pay for anyone to go to college. Heck, at that age if he was working it was after school and any child support he paid was based on a very small income.

You’ve got an unrealistic and defeatist attitude about child support. You need to educate yourself and let go of the belief that child support is meant to support mothers. NOTHING could be further from the truth.

March 7, 2011 at 2:26 pm
(50) jb says:

What about the greedy bitch mother who doesnt even buy the kids clothes with the child support but buys her boyfriend stuff??? what about the greedy bitch mother who goes to court to gt the child support raised then decides to quit her job because now she can stay at home all day and make a pay check becase section 8 pays her rent food stamps buys the food medicaid covers hospital needs all she has to do is pay her cell phone bill and her new car payment….. hmmmm sounds funny to me no one thinks about the gold digging bitches who use their kids as a pay check even though the kids are at her brothers house 85% of the time and with their dad 2 days a week for 3 hours a day even though he wants custody the court system sucks so bad

March 11, 2011 at 9:59 am
(51) SGT says:

I have read through all of these comments and just can’t believe how this country has fallen so far from right. This country was so strong with integrity and prosperity. In the 50 and 60 our grandfathers and grandmothers never asked for help from anyone. Now we want money from our goverment just for breathing and anyone else we see fit to pay. Its also sad that people are not being held accountible for lack of character and integerty. Instead of doing right, we have come up with this “its ok if I can get away with” mentality. If it feels wrong its wrong people. We have become to comfy with the easy of life as Americans. But have done nothing to earn it.

Where am I going with all this? Get rid of child support all together and quit asking for help. You want money for your kids and you care about your kids. Then stay together and work it out or don’t have kids with the person in the first place. I get that things happen, then you might want to plan better in the future or life is going to be tough if you don’t. People like this will all most all ways suffer because they will never be proactive. Instead they are what I call reactive and don’t know who they are or what they can truly achieve. My wife now used to dance and work low paying jobs just to take care of her kids. She didn’t want money from her “baby daddies”. She is now a RN and the strongest women I have ever known. Point! The more and more that Goverment and state get involved the more problems we will have. George Washington believed that the government should have the least amount of governing as possible. And for good reason, Goverment can ruin a wet dream real fast.

March 15, 2011 at 2:16 pm
(52) taken4everything says:

It is hillarious to read this woman’s article. Oh, how self righteous she is! The state of the economy has caused so many to lose their jobs. It is ridiculous to expect someone to pay when they have no money. The judges should actually do their jobs for once and determine if the loss of the job was due to their fault or to other circumstances. If there was no fault then the non-custodial parent should be given a reduction. In tact families make sacrifices when hard times hit and this woman should stop expecting to live off her ex when he can’t afford to pay. She should be held in contempt and jailed, not him. She is greedy and just using the system to get some sick perverted revenge against this man. And…I’m a woman and no I don’t receive or pay child support. I’ve seen way too many men’s lives get destroyed because judges just follow charts. Do your jobs judges. Stop greed and destruction of people’s lives.

March 23, 2011 at 10:17 am
(53) SGT Campbell says:

Well said, We are a greedy nation. We want money and get it any way we can, even if we have to manipulate the truth to make it seem just. We just stand by and watch others run there own grandmothers and grandfathers over just for a dollar. Are we hurting that bad that we use our children to collect money?

March 24, 2011 at 9:47 am
(54) E. Roberts says:

I can only share my personal experience which is this, My wife decided to move out two years ago and ever since I have been giving her 1,200 a month to help support our 3 children which is more than what the courts would award her based on my income should this ever become legal. Recently I lost my job and had to take a huge paycut, because of this I had to move out of my apartment and in with family just so that I could continue to pay the child support. In the past few weeks I have run out of money completely and have not been able to pay her anything. I did find a new job and am starting in 2 weeks but she needs money now and I do understand that however I have no way of providing it. At this time I am being called every name in the book and told that im a worthless human being because I missed two payments and will miss a few more until I start work. My wife has had no steady income for the two years that we have been separated and has been living completely off me and the food stamps shes collecting. Shes been trying to find a job but has had a tough time finding something with flexable hours so she can be home when the kids get back from school. I could scream and yell that she should have had a job all this time and that if she had been more responsible than getting thru this month would not have been so bad. On the flip side she could say that no matter what happens I need to make sure my kids have food on the table, a roof over there heads, and clothes on there backs and no matter what i need to give her every last cent I have until I start working. So who’s the bad guy here ? Am I an evil ex and a bad father because ive been out of work for a month and have finaly run out of money ? should she be held accountable for not having a job because she doesnt want to leave her at home alone in the afternoons and cant afford babysitters ? Divorce is hard and everybody looses, and everybody thinks they are getting the crappy end of the stick.

March 29, 2011 at 10:19 am
(55) SGT Campbell says:

I don’t agree with (everybody loses in a divorce) Ask yourself this: How did she lose when she left, got the kids and some of your money? If she doesn’t really care about you then its a win,win,win for her. We are quick to turn our heads and say its ok when the wife takes off with the kids but at the same, quick to granting her child support. Where is our moral compass? The only thing we as the older generation is showing our young people what right and wrong look like.

June 25, 2011 at 8:03 am
(56) Elaine says:

Child support is a worthwhile thing when it is used correctly. However, far too often, it is used as a means of revenge on the ex.

I was married for 15 years and had four beautiful children. Meanwhile, I was emotionally abused by my husband, but I kept making excuses for his behavior, thinking it would get better. The fights would stop after he got a better job, a new house, etc. It never got better.

I told him I wanted a divorce, and he managed to file first. He accused me of many things that were untrue, and worst of all, took my children from me. I made less income than he did, because I had stayed home with my children all those years. He still decided that he wanted the children just so that he could have child support from me, because that is what the laws say.

I have very little income, and everything that I make goes to my children, but it’s still not enough. He still asks for more. He tries to get my new husbands wages figured in and attached. If I fall behind at all, he’s right there trying to get me thrown in jail. I have a little girl by my second husband, who helps to fill the void left behind by the children he stole from me, and he has even threatened to have her taken from me.

For all of those child support lynch mobs out there, think about that the next time you are saying that the child support laws are fair. Do you really think that a man like this would have wanted anything to do with his children if he could not use them to punish me?

The current laws do nothing but encourage child custody battles. Child support should be based on income or lack thereof, not on who “wins” the children. If one person loses a job, child support needs to be reduced, at least temporarily. If one parent makes consistently less than the other, that parent should never have to pay child support at all.

July 20, 2011 at 4:59 pm
(57) Disgusted says:

It’s very easy to point fingers and blame the “Dad”. Well, my husband had custody of his daughter for 3 years and mommy dearest didn’t pay child support. She tried to hide behind “bankruptcy” but continued to take her cruises/vacations, have her nails done and shop till she dropped. The court DID NOTHING. If the situation were reversed, my husband would have been in jail. He is currently unemployed, like so many others in this bad economy, but still has to pay child support. The mother does everything she can to disrupt his visitation or just take it away from him. Mother was found in contemp for not producing child for Xmas with Dad, and has to this day (5 years later) not paid her penalties!! The legal system does NOT work when the mother is the one commiting crimes. We are broke and I (as the stepmother) am paying the child support and providing medical insurance. As a result, we cannot pay our own bills and will probably lose our home. Then where is the child to visit??? Mommy dearest can cry poor but live high on the hog and NO-ONE DOES ANYTHING ABOUT IT. Can some great legal brains trust tell me how to handle that?????

July 21, 2011 at 11:12 am
(58) DCGirl says:

My brother pays over $2k a month in child support for his three kids, in addition to having them on his insurance. He lives frugally in an apartment while his ex just bought a house with her new man, goes out to eat all the time, and shops shops shops. My brother just lost his job, how is he supposed to continue to pay over $2k/month to support HER lifestyle? (The kids need to have their needs met, they don’t need to maintain an upper class lifestyle.) If they were still together, obviously she would put in a little more effort. There needs to be some kind of cooperation and accommodation when an unexpected crisis occurs.

August 1, 2011 at 9:40 am
(59) wiz says:

you know every one say it takes so much to raise a child but with chruches giving away meals clothes everyday-public assitence-food pantry-red cross-when child support for childeren came up i,m sure thease programs was not avlable but today thease assitence are every where—so a costodian parent with this kind of help and one job and child support can live of the hog unless that parent choose not to take advantage of programs and chooses nikes instead of payless

October 28, 2011 at 6:04 pm
(60) kevin says:

This feminist lesbian just hates men.

February 15, 2012 at 9:06 am
(61) Orpheus says:

I was let go from my job I have my children three days out of the week. Im new to child support because my X decided to take me to court for me purchasing a house. she said I had a home and a truck and she didn’t have any thing. I asked her so what do you think you should have when you haven’t worked in four years that we have been separated. I was ordered to pay 800 a month for two kids while I was employed which was still high do to the fact that they take the money before taxes. So after getting terminated after six years of employment the Judge would not lower my child support payment by one cent. Now I’m looking for employment I have no job I have a house note a car note no unemployment check yet and look my kids mother still have no job but shes a full time student. Now I have to go pay a lawyer $1500 to $2000 to represent me in court so I can get some kind of justice.

April 29, 2012 at 6:47 am
(62) misti says:

Well it’s not always the mother working her butt off for her kids unfortunately. Now before my hubby came along i was a single mom for 4 years, never received a dime from my son’s father. I ended up meeting my hubby after he was divorced from his ex wife. He was paying her money to help before it even went to court. She tried every way in the world to split us up. She is one of those kind of girls who will never work and leaves off the government and send her kids everywhere but her own house. She is now remarried. Her husband even said that they dont need it, she is just pushing the fact because she knows our life is hard , as we have a new baby, and dont get government assistance. Now my hubby has lost his job……NOW WHAT?!?! I work full time and trying to support 4 people, and pay that stupid witch who wont even let us see the kids because I dont want him to go to jail as he is trying to find a job. Anybody have any suggestions?

June 19, 2012 at 1:36 pm
(63) ed says:

i have been paying child support thru the DOR here in Mass. i fully understand the need for my kids to be supported.and have no quams about supporting them .BUT.. this was all determined by the ex making 25k more than i.. all my bills have fallen behind.. car taken away,,not much food in my cabinet anymore.. i had to move to a very very small apt… only 1 bedroom,, yet the state says this is in the best interest of the children,,by law i cannot have my 13 year old daughter stay with me due to the privacy rule here in mass.. how is this in the best interest of the children,, my current obligations which are duducted from my check were not taken into consideration. i have 2 kids i support.. how can i have food in my cabinet for them when i am paying for the food at the ex’s place??? it is almost impossible,, a 2nd job you say??? how is it in the best interest of the children if i have 2 jobs and my time with the kids suffers due to having work 2 jobs,, i already work 8 to 5 ,5 days a week, not may employers are keen on making a work schedule are the childs visitation scheduel as i have already found out. after taxes and child support i am looking at 13 k a year making 16plus and hour. she is taking in my 10g’s from child support and making 52 k before deductions.. i would like to know how all this is done in the best interest of the children.. keep in mind,, i am not bitter at all… just looking for some fairness in all of this.. the court says it is impartial,, i was treated like a criminal in divorce court,, when i was not the one who strayed,, i am now looking at moving out of state with a girlfriend to recover my finances as i have pets and should have kids on every other weekend, there are not many people that will take a roommate with that type of baggage..just looking for some fairness in the system which had to be developed around one very bitter woman with the first child support case..

June 27, 2012 at 11:18 pm
(64) Patty says:

Should my son support my daughter in law’s child by a previous marriage? I think this is unfair. She has a low paying job which is all she can handle for now…she needs more schooling…and she is behind in her payments…wants to pay but doesn’t make that much…the irs took their entire tax refund and they were only married 4 months last year…what do all think..i am really trying to understand this…it is like stealing from my son…and the custodial parent hasn’t allowed the mother to see her child in 4 years…

July 6, 2012 at 2:55 pm
(65) Annette says:

I just want to say I am a mother that recieves child support. But I also date a guy who was paying 900.00 a month on unemployment. he is living with his mother and his ex make a good living matter of fact doouble what was recorded at the divorce.
Why is it not fare to ask for a reduction he is in the rears and cant even afford to do things with his kids or provide a roof over his head or over his kids head when he has them. He has degrees and has not been able to get a good paying job. Matter of fact he took a job at 7.85 an hour. And you are telling me that he should do what? At the age of 47 work 3 jobs he already works more that 40 a week and never gets to see his kids.
If they were still married that income would be lost as well. So I think that the families do with what they have and in this situation you should never count on the childsupport. Like by a more expensive house. Lets be real itsl not equal at all.

July 12, 2012 at 2:20 pm
(66) db says:

If she didnt ask for the divorce she wouldnt be spreading the joint family wealth between two households. You get what you have coming when you decide to divorce your spouse. You get no sympathy from me. Maybe people should try and resolve the problem before destroying everyones life in the household. The lower standard of living is to be blamed on the spouse who wanted the divorce, in this economy my wife asked for a divorce because i was depressedfor 5 years. Now i finally sought treatment and am going on disability. She reduced the family income from 80g to 35 what she makes now and i am not paying a thing while waiting for my disability. Its not my fault and i refuse to feel badly about it. I supported her in an upscale fashion for 17 years. Now its her turn to earn, im done!

July 12, 2012 at 5:28 pm
(67) Cathy Meyer says:

You were suffering from depression for 5 years but waited until she asked for a divorce to seek treatment? And isn’t the reduced income due to your choice to file for disability instead of continuing to work, not her choice to file for a divorce?

I commend you for supporting her upscale lifestyle for 17 years. But, you also impact her life negatively when you refused treatment for depression. Maybe if you had sought treatment your family would still be intact. In other words, you played a role in your divorce and now you are playing a role in the reduced income since your divorce.

July 23, 2012 at 4:04 am
(68) Damien says:

I believe that child support in an honest society would work just fine, but we’re not in an honest society. Men do make children they never had any intentions to pay for and women do have children and live off the system as a career. Those are the negative facts. And sadly that’s the general stigma “deadbeat dads” and single women with more than one child face day to day. But, there is sympathy for who ever the custodial parent is. And it’s usually the Mom. While Fathers, unless they conform totally to whatever Mom or the courts demand of them, are always under the threat of being labled, jailed, or alienated from their child(ren). First if the process is so automatic as to who will get be custodial this shouldn’t be in criminal court issue. Because there are people (Men) sharing cells with rapists, armed robbers, drug dealers, murderers, when their only crime was being broke. And I’m sorry, that is total BS!

Custodial parents have many social, community, government, and judicial resources at their finger tips and I do believe that’s a good thing. But, everybody knows that absolute power corrupts absolutely.

July 24, 2012 at 9:33 pm
(69) Joe says:

The system is a joke. It is designed to completely screw the non custodial parent (Dad) and make the Mom the puppet master. I had a very successful finance company that went under in 2008. The judge awarded my ex millions that she knew I had no chance of paying. If I did not pay that week I would go to jail forever (or until that liberal judge believed a once successful financial guy). I left the country with a warrant out for my arrest. If I ever go back I will be locked up for life most likely and I haven’t paid one dime of support (I did leave her with a million of cash which was a huge mistake). I want to pay support (that I can afford) and I want to see my children. The ex loves this and knows she has enough to survive and at the same time prevent me from ever seeing them again (4, 7, and 10yrs old). If I ever do go back I will shoot her in the face and the judge too. Men have to stand up for their rights and fight and kill and die for what they believe or life is not worth living. There are few men left in America that are willing to stand up for themselves in any manner today. Don’t even start to tell me about the courts working this out. They will not even hear an argument from my lawyer unless I am present at which point they will just lock me up and ignore the facts. Nobody cares. I think the blacks are doing it right…leave these insufferable American women like the scum they are and move on with your life. I decided to do just that and have started over with a new wife and family in Brazil. The western culture is dead and it wasn’t the immigrants and slaves that ruined it, it was fat lazy white women who feel entitled and don’t give a hoot about the consequences or impact (of their decisions) on their families and their country.

July 26, 2012 at 10:02 am
(70) db says:

To bad. You should have thought about that before you divorced and spread your legs for another man. My wife cheated and I feel her boyfriend and her are now responsible for providing for my son. You made your bed now lay in it.

August 5, 2012 at 6:53 am
(71) Elaine says:

I have a major problem with many of the points in your article.

First of all, you seem to believe that someone should not put importance on a roof over their own head. Without a home, it’s hard to hold down a job, and sorry, but that is very important to the stability of a child. Also, most non-custodial parents are also obligated to have a home if they ever want to see their children. My ex even stated in my divorce decree that I cannot see my children unless I live in a 3 bedroom home.

As for feeling sorry for custodial parents when the non-custodial parent loses a job and has to lower payments, guess what, their quality of life would go down no matter what. Married parents work together for the sake of all involved and unmarried parents should not be any different. When the income goes down, both figure out where expenses can be cut, and sometimes that means that children have to make sacrifices, too. They may not get the new clothes they want this year, or they may have to shop at thrift shops, etc. Why should being unmarried make any difference in making sacrifices when someone loses a job.

The child is ultimately the responsibility of both parents, and not all of that responsibility is financial on either end. I don’t think that either parent should ever be reduced to nothing more than a paycheck. I have lost time with my children thanks to a vindictive ex, and I would much rather have my children than a monthly check from him, even if it is a struggle to care for them. Any parent who believes otherwise is not much of a parent in my book. I love my kids, not the money they could get me if I was their custodial parent. In fact, I’d continue paying child support to him if it would give me my kids back.

August 5, 2012 at 7:54 pm
(72) dan says:

Cathy you are on cack! If women dont want to pay all of the expenses of their divorce including raising and feeding the children, then they should be ok being in an “unhappy marriage” im tired of the endless articles about the poor women who get left without support. They should have thought about the consequences of spreading their legs in the first place. They should have expected that the husband would quit working when they filed for their precious divorce. Its funny how you cannot find any articles explaining why good hardworking men suddenly cannot earn a living after their wife wants a divorce? Hummm i wonder why we are all deadbeats? Perhaps it has something to do with being screwed over by the women and the courts. I say to all men who are getting a divorce, run south and let the courts pay the fing child support!

August 16, 2012 at 8:38 pm
(73) Carltonuknowwho says:

There are a lot of no custodial parents out there that are suffering to pay child support. The custodial parents has resources that seem never ending. I have asked the Florida Department of Revenue, the name says it all, for assistance for a period of 18 months is getting a modification of my child support order when my son turned 18 in April of 2011. It is now August of 2012 and I have yet to get a response. I cal the 800 number and if I am not hung up on or told to call back by the automated system, I end up talking with someone that come off as why are you wasting my time with your problems. But when I start a new job my income deduction order is there promptly. I have been unemployed and asked for assistance in a temporary reduction, denied. I struggle to keep a room that I can live in, notice I say room not apartment on a 2000 thousand dollars a month. The custodial parent lives lavish on 7000 thousand a month. Do you see a problem here??

August 30, 2012 at 10:37 am
(74) Linda says:

If the custodial parent did not feed her children then it would be considered neglect and the custodial parent would go to jail. Why is it any different for the noncustodial parent? Custodial parents are responsible for everything from school to food on the table to their well being. I am so tired of hearing about the noncustodial parent and the hard times they have. Raising a child is the most difficult jobs out there. If you work another job then the courts will make the custodial parent pay more money so the noncustodial parent pays less. Who suffers? The custodial parent spends less time with the children and the children are without either parent. I am raising my son on my own. My ex has not paid child support for almost two years because he filed Bankruptcy for the third time. He now filed for modification. The courts feel sorry for him because he claims he is unable to see his son. He has not wanted to see him in over two years. Now my son states he feels nothing for his father and doesn’t care about him.The courts blame me. The custodial parent gets blamed for everything. I do not even have a life other than my child. I’m just glad that the noncustodial parent had the money and time to get remarried. The best thing for me is that when my son thinks of home, he thinks of me.

September 8, 2012 at 12:53 pm
(75) George says:

I pay over1200 dollars a month in child support plus medical insurance. After these deductions my weekly paycheck is about $200…
So I’ve been homeless for 2 years now..
Living in my car… taking showers at work…
What did I do to deserve this?
I had a children with a woman who cheated on me and left me for her boss…
And there is nothing in place to help someone like me because state programs go off of your gross income…

September 13, 2012 at 8:18 pm
(76) Jasln says:

What about a father now suffering from more than one illness whos ex refusees to work because she gets 300 in cs free rent and food stamps I am the onlh one providing for tje kids but dont havd custody

September 17, 2012 at 11:07 am
(77) Marci says:

This response is to #11 Jack non-costodial.
Why is it whenever the (Father) non -costodial parent pay child support they feel they are enriching the costodial parent? , your suggestion that the support payments go toward a trust fund is rediculous, children don’t stop eating, wearing, living , needing so many things for their everyday existence until they turn 21 and is able to use their “trust fund” let’s face it most men would rather not pay child sipport at all because once they are out of the house their children becomes an afterthought , and mostly they are so mad at the moms that they would rather not be bothered with the kids. Now there are the very small percentage of men who actually do love their kids and are happy to support them, interested in their needs and even their wants and are willing to stand up and shoulder their responsability , as a parent . Even (non costodial) mostly those are the ones who are enriching their X spouses but in the interest of their children they do what they have to do.
I personally know some of those . Unfortunately my X is not one of those . He is one that feel he is enriching the x spouse. With the pittance that he provides. BUT there is a great equalizer OLD AGE he and all the ones who consider their children a bother, will get there and the children unfortunately will not care. I have seen that happen to to many men . You MEN have a choice
Be a father to your children OR NOT and enjoy the love and support of your children and Grandchildren in your golden years OR. NOT 😊😊😊😊😊😊

March 13, 2013 at 6:39 am
(78) Charity says:

Hey there! I’ve been following your website for a long time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Kingwood Texas! Just wanted to mention keep up the excellent work!

April 19, 2013 at 1:44 pm
(79) al says:

I am non custodial parent and my divorce finalized last November. I have paid all child support on time. My ex puts all kind of hurdles in visiting with my kids. So much that I haven’t had kids over in last 1.5 years. I was visiting them at their school during lunch hour with their friends in cafetaria. This was impacting my work but I miss my kids, so I kept meeting them. Finally, yesterday I was laid off. I am now unemployed and has to go to court to modify child support. I hope custodial parents realize that its taxing on non custodial parents if they don’t see the kids on regular basis and it impacts kids parental well being. I know I won’t be able to make what I was making by travelling to another town and this will lower my support to my kids. Our child support ratio is 64 to 36 custodial to non custodial parent. Where do you need 2800 to raise 11 and 8 years olds?

May 19, 2013 at 7:55 pm
(80) TC says:

I am dumb founded by some of these comments. My husband recently lost his job and has no way of paying his current child support rate. We have two children and he has one with his ex. I am a part time teacher looking for a full time position. My husband will have to request a reduced rate for the time being until he gets another job, we’re hopeful that won’t take too long. I realize the reduction in support will negatively affect his ex financially, however it has also negatively affected us as well. I have had to explain to my two boys the situation and that we will ALL have to make sacrifices for the time being. I too have sleepless nights wondering how we will pay our mortgage, utilities, groceries and all of the other basic necessities. And for the record my husbands ex was being paid an amount that far exceeded the amount we spend on our two boys every month. I know it’s difficult for many of you to understand what fathers go through, so instead of being ignorant try educating yourselves first regarding the effect this has on everyone!

June 28, 2013 at 10:21 pm
(81) jj says:

I don’t complain much in my life but reading these stories makes me want to share my story. I bust my back everyday (7 days) to pay my rent, moms house lol, pay my bills, and the good ole child support. I also have 50% custody of my two children. Its embarrasing but its all I can do for the moment. Yea, the mother isn’t the greatest but she is the mother. Its been a very humbling experience. Life was awesome, being an intact family. Vacations, nice clothes, and spending every evening and weekends with the kids. Now its three jobs and every other week with my children. I only wish to keep my hard
earned money to be able to give my children an awesome life like we used to have. But like so many fathers and mothers like me, we do what we can. Its just so embarrasing living with my mom lol. I need another job btw lol.

October 25, 2013 at 8:38 pm
(82) too bad says:

If there is no money there is no money. So I will take the kids with me if custodial parent does not agree

January 22, 2014 at 3:50 pm
(83) alain smithee - non-custodial parent says:

This is why I prefer the Melson methodology for calculating child support because it sets aside a self-support sustenance reserve for both parents and then allocates a percentage of remaining income from each parent to be applied toward a standard-of-living adjustment for the children..

The simple fact is, if the non-custodial parent can’t support themselves and ends up jobless and homeless, then the custodial parent gets no child support at all.

BOTH parents need to be able to support themselves and their children instead of treating the non-custodial parent as an indentured servant who is allowed to visit with their children at the custodial parent’s whim.

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