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Poll: beyond child support and medical?

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hoya96 posted 7/31/2013 10:37 AM

Hi all,

The decree modification litigation my ex brought against me in October 2012 is *finally* resolved, and I have a question for those of you paying and/or receiving child support.

Prior to this litigation, my ex paid me child support that we agreed on (in 2010 when we divorced) which, at the time, was slightly more than the state standard formula for 3 kids. I voluntarily paid for their medical insurance, he assisted with private school tuition (not quite half, but close), we split summer camps, and he assisted as I asked (which wasn't often) with school supplies and sports. It was fairly amicable, financially speaking.

He sued me in Oct 2012 after marrying OW with a HOST of modification issues (I did not know it was coming). Over the course of the proceedings, my lawyer discovered that he was now UNDERpaying me child support according to our state's law (he had since started at a new job with a BIG jump in salary). My lawyer also said that I should not be paying medical insurance as the custodial parent. In the course of negotiations, my ex refused to agree to split their private school tuition with me (he makes 2.5x my salary - I am a teacher at the school and get them 75% aid with my position - he refuses to split the remaining), as well as anything beyond OOP medical expenses. My lawyer felt I would lose these issues if it went to a judge, and frankly, I didn't have the money to gamble and find out.

So, with our litigation now resolved, ex has informed me that since he has to pay SO MUCH CHILD SUPPORT (again, he pays our state mandated formula) and their medical insurance (state law), he refuses to assist me financially with anything else. I am now responsible for all sports, activities, school supplies, school costs, etc, etc, etc.

Most of my divorced friends have ex husbands who contribute to their children's costs above and beyond child support and medical. I'm wondering if my ex is unusual in refusing to pay anything else or if most of you deal with this.

Thanks.

LadyQ posted 7/31/2013 10:50 AM

Well, my decree says he has to pay 50% of all unreimbursed medical/dental and child support. I rarely ask him for anything unless it's going to cost me more than $50. My dd's ADHD med is $44 a month and I don't say anything. I pay for school supplies, school clothes, most of their activities like summer camps and such. The only one I seek assistance with is cheer leading, because it's usually around $1000 a year. He pays his support regularly and on time, so I usually don't make waves about the "small" stuff. I have a friend, though, whose x wife buys aspirin for the girls and sends him a bill! So, I guess there are all sorts of variations.

Edited to add: although, if I was financially strapped and couldn't afford the 55.00 for summer basketball league, I would ask for it. No reason my child should have to skip this activity that she's done since the 1st grade (we're talking 10 years!) just because he couldn't keep his dick in his pants!

[This message edited by LadyQ at 10:53 AM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

hoya96 posted 7/31/2013 11:02 AM

Thanks LadyQ. There is a ton I pay for that I genuinely don't mind paying for on my own (for example, I send them to a bunch of camps in the summer but only asked for some help with their sleepaway camps. I pay for all their sports fees and sport uniforms, but ask for help with the $1000 7th grade trip to Catalina. Etc).

I guess the part I'm struggling with is that I DO pay for so much without complaint/asking (including over $12,000 just in their school tuition), and he makes a ridiculous amount more than me, but feels that child support should cover everything.

Thanks for the feedback.

Helen of Troy posted 7/31/2013 11:35 AM

Receiver here. I get CS and half of medical copay amounts.
I pay the health insurance premiums through my job.

He pays zero above and beyond that. No camps, school trips, nothing. I have asked the schools for scholarships for certain field trips once in awhile.
And when I get reimbursement for medical copays it is to the penny. There's no rounding up.

chikastuff posted 7/31/2013 11:57 AM

I think this is something that's going to have to be addressed on a case by case basis and after the dust has settled from these recent developments. Let some time go by, let him settle down, and then approach him about contributing to the various things you need/want assistance with. And I would pose it as a mutual decision you're both making. Ex. "When we discussed raising our kids we talked about wanting them to be well traveled. DD has the opportunity to visit x, y, z. What are your thoughts?" and then when he responds saying, that's great, yes I think she should go you respond with. "Thank you for your input. Let's split the cost and make this happen for our child. The cost is X, so your share is Y."

Nature_Girl posted 7/31/2013 12:02 PM

Right now he only just started paying me child support, and he fought tooth & nail to only pay the minimum amount. He makes $90,000 a year (a small fortune where we live). I am unemployed and have been out of the workforce for 14 years. I am not really employable, but I'm trying to find work. Not successful so far.

At this time he is not paying me the 50% medical. My lawyer is trying to get the medical portion calculated differently because of the obvious income disparity. While that negotiation continues STBX refuses to pay even 50%.

He won't cough up a penny more for the kids as a rule. So my kids get no camps, no activities of any kind, no sports. Normally he will not feed them anything when he has them for visitation, even though they're with him for hours through the dinner hour. He says that's what the child support is for. If they are lucky he'll spring for a pack of French fries at Mickey D's and a coke. When I've asked for help with things like back to school expenses he refuses.

LadyQ posted 7/31/2013 12:17 PM

Interestingly enough, hoya, the only thing that he balks at is his 50% of medical/dental! He never says a word about the cheer leading, and even offers to help pay for expensive things like birthday parties. Go figure!

hoya96 posted 7/31/2013 12:46 PM

will get by and Nature_Girl - I'm so sorry. I suppose I should be grateful that since he makes so much money, he HAS to pay me decent child support so at least I can provide as much as I can. That's awful.

chika - I completely agree that your suggestion of how to approach the conversation is the best way. That's actually very similar to how I constructed the private school tuition conversation ("we have always agreed that due to the state we live in, private school is important, and since I am able to get them a $75000 topnotch education for a fraction of the cost, I'm hoping you're willing to meet me halfway in providing for our kids..." etc). Unfortunately, since marrying the OW, his stance has changed on everything.

But hopefully you're right, and with some time, he'll contribute more.

peridot posted 7/31/2013 12:52 PM

I don't think it's unusual. I can't even get my ex to pay what he is legally obligated to pay.

The CS is garnished because he stopped paying it. He's supposed to pay 80% of medical and childcare expenses. He doesn't though. Hasn't paid so much as a penny in 5 years.

I couldn't get him to agree to any other expenses. In my state he's only obligated for medical and childcare.

Though a few times in court he offered to pay for school supplies. This was a few days before or after school started. I had already bought them. I told his attorney he could reimburse me for some of the supplies. He never did.

I only asked for what I was legally entitled to and what I was pretty sure a judge would give me.

GabyBaby posted 7/31/2013 12:53 PM

XWH may have been a horrid husband, but his saving grace is that he does take care of our kids.
We have 50/50 custody, so XWH does not pay child support. He does, however, pay 50% on medical.
It wasn't written into our divorce decree, but he also pays at least 50% of their other expenses as well. I never have to fight/beg him for his portion (or vice versa). I send an email with receipts attached and the kids usually bring a check home with them from their next visit.

EvenKeel posted 7/31/2013 13:18 PM

Normally he will not feed them anything when he has them for visitation

LOL...I thought this just happened in my world.

He also feels what he pays ($195 ever two weeks) is PLENTY to raise 2 kids on.

Not only that....I have had to supply HIS house with items the kids need (think bed pillow and shampoo). When DS bed pillow went missing (ironically the same time Ex's new GF moved in)....I had to buy another pillow. Nice that I get to supply his GF's pillows too, huh?

Sorry - no help but wanted to let you know I hear ya!

Phoenix1 posted 7/31/2013 14:12 PM

HHHmmmm...well, let's see, I get no CS and no other support of any kind, so I don't know if it is normal or not!

As a side note, POS is unemployed and our dissolution hasn't gone before a judge yet so it could change from a legal standpoint. However, POS has been unemployed for over a year (intentionally resigned from a good paying job) and I have provided all financial support since then anyway, so I am used to it right now. Anything he "might" contribute would be a bonus at this point!

Weatherly posted 7/31/2013 14:16 PM

Mine is supposed to pay $70/week for 2 kids, and half medical. He hasn't paid anything in CS since March, and I've never seen medical expenses. If I ask for sports fees or special stuff he tells me that is what child support is for. He is supposed to have health insurance for them, and he doesn't, we pay it all.

He doesn't have clothes, toys, or beds for them at his house. He has an air mattress he blows up in the living room, an air mattress I bought, and he doesn't always feed them, often guilts them for needing to eat at all and tells them it is too expensive and that's why he's poor. I supply absolutely everything, and then he ridicules and criticizes it to the kids, because, I did supply nice things, for them to bring back home, and the things would go "missing" then show up in a garage sale. Now, it's wal-mart and Dollar store stuff for his house, and he tells them that the stuff I buy is crap and I don't take care of them like I should.

His wages had gotten garnished, so he quit and found a job where he would get paid under the table.

I don't think your ex is unusual. Sadly.

Weatherly posted 7/31/2013 14:31 PM

Oops double post

[This message edited by Weatherly at 2:55 PM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

HopeImOverIt posted 7/31/2013 14:37 PM

Our decree states that Ex pays (1) child support stipulated by state formula, (2) share of child care expenses, (3) share of health/dental insurance, and (4) share of out-of-pocket health costs once a $250 deductible is met. This is all according to my states standard.

I also proposed that Ex pay for 1/2 of "extra" expenses like camp, sports, school activites, prom, insurance premium for young driver, etc. He initally balked at that. Fortunately his lawyer told him this was was "standard". So we put it in our decree.

I suspect though that it's only "standard" for NCPs who care about being - or being perceived as - "good" parents. I am afraid that your lawyer is right that a judge won't make him pay. Sorry about that.

That said, I think it's extremely common for fathers to pay a share of private school in cases where the children were going there before the divorce. Your lawyer would know better than me, but if he has been paying that all along, I kind of suspect that a judge might order him to keep paying.

This may not help you since you are a teacher and probably not employed during the summer, but for those who are, summer camp counts as a child care expense for children under 13. In my state, the NCP would have to pay a share of it.

abigailadams posted 7/31/2013 15:40 PM

We live in NY and my stbx pays child support and what are called add-ons on a pro rata basis (60%) of after school, extra curricular activities, un-reimbursed medical expenses i.e. orthodonture, glasses, and camp. I was told that is standard in NY and I know stbx's lawyer would not have allowed this if it wasn't. Child support is supposed to cover living expenses-a place to live, clothing, food.

I will say my stbx does pay. He is jerk about little stuff though like he wouldn't buy her toothpaste for his house and I finally sent over the kind DD likes.

hopefulmom posted 7/31/2013 15:47 PM

Ha. Our divorce was final three years ago; we were separated a year and a half before that time. How much has he paid during this time? 0! Because of his poor work history it wasn't worth the lawyer and court fees to get his measly payments! He chose to go to school to become a pastor and not work over supporting his kids. Sounds not quite right?

peacelovetea posted 7/31/2013 15:53 PM

Mine pays a lot in child support and alimony -- and also pays for the medical insurance (though it is mostly or entirely covered by his employer) and pays 85% of extra expenses, though I only ask him for unusual and high expenses like glasses, surgery co-pays, and camps not for things like a standard copay, though I could. We were going to set up a joint account in which we each paid x amount per month based on the 85/15 percentage to cover these sorts of things, as well as instrument rentals, sports and school fees etc but he still hasn't gone to the bank to set it up like he said he would. WE're amicable though and WH has been really reasonable about paying. He understands that its for the kids' well being.

GabyBaby posted 7/31/2013 16:41 PM

We were going to set up a joint account in which we each paid x amount per month based on the 85/15 percentage to cover these sorts of things, as well as instrument rentals, sports and school fees etc but he still hasn't gone to the bank to set it up like he said he would.
I would be very wary of doing this.
With a joint account, he would also have access to WITHDRAW funds and you'd have little recourse except the time and expense of taking him to court.
Instead, I'd suggest having him add your personal bank account as a "bill" on his personal bill pay (if he uses online banking) or giving him your account and routing numbers so that he can send money directly to your account (but has no access to withdraw funds).

ETA:
I've used this to route money to my daughter's personal checking account. When she's away at school, this allows me to send her spending money, "I'm thinking of you" money, or emergency funds (so far unecessary) within 24hrs.
I can put money INTO her account, but I cannot withdraw or view transactions on her account since it isn't mine.

[This message edited by GabyBaby at 4:44 PM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

tabitha95 posted 7/31/2013 17:48 PM

I get CS and we both have the kids on our medical plans. We are both lucky though, because we pay very small monthly costs to our medical and it wouldn't matter if it was an individual or family plan it would cost the same.

Our paperwork shows that EX is to pay 1/2 of the after school daycare expenses of DS11.

I pay for everything else. Clothes, school supplies, birthday parties, football, baseball, etc...

EX will often ask how much a sport costs, and will include 1/2 of the price in his next CS payment.

He is not required to do so.

I consider CS to cover the expenses of the kids, so I don't often make requests to help with extra expenses. Luckily EX will take note of some expenses and help me out.

He makes twice as much as me, but he had to keep the house and his expenses are more than mine.

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