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Child Support: How much is too much?

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Child Support: How much is too much?

Postby NorthAmericanguy » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:00 pm

This is a 2009 article:

"On Jan. 1, Massachusetts adopted new child-support guidelines that will likely raise the amount paid by non-custodial parents, usually fathers.

Are the new guidelines excessive and unfair, as a lawsuit charges? Or were the old guidelines too stingy? How much child support is enough? How much is too much?

Fathers & Families, a Boston-based advocacy organization, says the payments under the new guidelines are excessive. Non-custodial parents, usually fathers, who must now make increased payments could be forced to work long hours or move to a distant community to find housing they can afford.

They will have less time to spend with their children, and may be left with a much lower standard of living than the custodial parents.
"

Read more here: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/abo ... s-too-much
NorthAmericanguy
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Postby NorthAmericanguy » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:15 pm

Random comments taken from the article:



"Prior to my divorce I never gave child support any thought. My now ex-wife stayed home with our son for most of our marriage, while I worked two jobs. She has a college degree and is capable of making a lot more money than I do, but when the agreed time came for her to get a job she only worked part-time and I had to continue working two jobs and as much over-time as I can get. When we realized the marriage was over we decided to handle it amicably. My ex-wife took all of the money from our savings to hire a lawyer for us both, as a mediator. Very long and painful story short, she in fact hired a lawyer with my money to represent only her. She and her lawyer convinced me that everything I was signing was a great bargain and the most amicable resolution. I make less than 72k and pay $450.00/week in support, this is over 50% of my take home and I have since found out it is also 30% above MA guidelines. I have to borrow money from family and friends each month. I too, as so many fathers have stated, cannot afford to hire a lawyer. I also have my son on my insurance; I have to pay for co-pays and his sports, activities in addition to the support. Believe me if my ex needed the money I wouldn't feel that I am being taken advantage of, but she and my son are living rent free now is a huge home on a lot of acreage with a pool and everything. I want to help, but how is it I am left destitute? Shouldn’t I have a right to shelter and food? The worst part is I have not had any visitation with my son in two years, I continue to pay for everything but when I am supposed to see him she says he doesn’t want to see me. He and I used to be close, I know she and her family are alienating me from him. I miss him so much. I do feel bad for the Mothers that need assistance and aren't getting it, I also feel bad for the father's that got forced into bankruptcy over it. The family court system is unjust. It needs to look at cases on a more individual basis. I had no choice but to represent myself in court and I am paying for it. I know I am not alone in this. Reform is desperately needed."





"My "baby mom" lives in California. I live in Pennsylvania. At the start of the relationship she stated that she would move to Philly (we met at a friends wedding). I gave her my grandmother's ring and begged her to migrate as soon as we became pregnant.

I gave her money for medical insurance(because she spent her money on motor bikes instead) and support and begged her to move. She pawned my grandmoms ring and refused to come to philly. She sued me and filed full custody for support in CA. She lives like a hobo; moving with my baby from place to place.

I've worked for the city of philly 20 yrs (investigating child abuse and at the prisons). I'm a honorably discharged veteran during time of war. I dont have an unpaid parking ticket. She has never been on a rent/mortgage document in her life.

I have to file for bankruptcy and lose my home and i have lost faith in these United states (particularly "progressive" California)...they only care about "greasing the money people...the money machine". :("







"My ex who doesn't work, married a man 2 years ago who makes 100k a year, drives a BMW and owns a beautiful 3500 sq ft home provides a lifestyle for my ex where she doesn't have to work. With that being said, she expects me to pay 100% medical expenses and day care (and she doesn't work) because she earns no income. I already pay $119 a week and I gross 45k a year. When does it end? She chooses to be a stay at home mom who earns no money and has a lifestyle that's way more comfortable then mine...now I have to suffer by paying more because his income doesn't count? This can't be right, can it?"




"I had my income imputed when I was unemployed, and my city had the highest unemployment rate in the country. The judge said "you should be making $60,000 a year"....now, I could have asked the judge to provide me that job and I'd work it. But I didn't. I didnt want to make a bad situation much much worse by asking a simple question. Yes. I was imputed (and billed) for a $60,000 a year job while I was unemployed. So we just fell further and further behind, even though the unemployment insurance check was garnished."



"My wife moved my kids 900 miles away to "go home" for a while. She never brought them back and filed for divorce.

I live in one of the most expensive states in the country. she lives in one of the poorest. State court looked at my salary, not where I was living and took 20% of my take home salary.

She just bought a house. Something neither of us could afford when we were married.

I'm stuck in a 1 bedroom apartment 45 minutes away from the city, and she just purchased a 3 bedroom 2 bathroom single family house with fireplace, formal dining room and huge back yard. My kids are 14 and 16. My child support is 20% of my take home salary.

I'm living on Marie Calandar frozen meals now. Sometimes I feel like putting a gun to my head.

Oh, and of course she told the kids it was my fault for the break up, so they don't really want to talk to me anymore.

The day before she left, both my kids kissed me goodbye before I put them on the school bus and told me they loved me.
"




"They need to figure out how much it costs to raise a kid in the custodial parents location, and alot that amount for child support. There is something wrong about giving the mom more money because the father went out and earned more. Im saying this because two days ago i took my sons mother to court, ive been paying 100% of everything for him for the past year, he will be a year in three days!! But she rarely lets me get him, ever...Its been in agreement that we split our time 50/50 and this never happened,she found a new Dr. Boyfriend and says shes gonna move my son across the country so they can be a family over there... so i took her to court. She cant move now, without my permision. But i was only given 94 days and her 271 days out of the year. And i have to pay 480.00 to her amonth plus daycare expences, to her mother. My sons mother is 23, lives with her parents, has no bills and collects WIC a program for mothers that gives food N stuffs. She has no bills, My childsupport payment is what bought her her new car!!! with enough left over for nights on the town.... lol, my point is, i know for afact my son needs more than 300 a month "ive been paying everything", for food n diapers n stuff, i think we should have to split that cost. Not only do i not get to see my son as much, but i have to buy this crazy lady stuff........not to mention the thousands i spent on a lawyer..."




"I remember the five year period from 1998 thru 2003. The child support and alimony orders to pay wife, her attorney, the children’s attorney, their medical expenses, their special child support add-on expenses from private school to private lessons. Those forced payments to the visitation monitors, those forced, court ordered fees of psych evaluators, therapists and counselors. These imposed financial hemorrhages had started to exceed my annual income of $75,000 by at least another $25,000.
I remember I was reduced to abandoning my car. I couldn’t afford the gas or the insurance. I started begging for food leftovers from restaurants and begging fellow engineers and workers at the office to donate their food leftovers to me. I was forced to asking my neighbors to let me read their old newspapers and magazines, I was forced to sew and mend every article of clothing that people were shocked to find that even my underwear showed several patches of repairs and mending.

Everyone that I pleaded with for help thought I was sick and somehow brought this upon myself. No one could imagine how an otherwise wealthy professional engineer could hit the skids like this thru the divorce courts. He must have had a drinking they would say, he let himself down.

How would they know that it wasn’t me? That it was the divorce court. The media had ignored our predicaments, the politicians had only heard that we are the ones who were failing our families. How else could one explain that even the universally adulated Obama would point an accusing finger at us and blame us for abandoning our children and shirking our responsibilities.

Was any of this background visible to the audiences in the court while I’d rise and utter those yes your honor, no your honor nuances to those mild mannered judges Isabel Cohen and Marjorie Steinberg were slowly tightening the noose on me each time I was brought in front of them?
How would the audience know that I was literally being cut to pieces each time that I was brought in front of them?
Yes, none could tell that I was slowly being crucified, while looking so normal, even guilty to the audience.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that thirty thousand of us decide to put an end to our lives each year that we have endured this pain. Many of us can’t take it anymore, we were not prepared for these shocking attacks and unrelenting mistreatment that no creature on earth has experienced, suffered or endured."





"It’s nice to know that some people care about what divorced men like me are going through; I just hope it’s for the right reasons.

Some people only want to hear our story, because they want to turn our words around on us and use it to help judges, lawyers, and politicians shirk the guilt of murdering so many innocent men.

Moreover, politicians, lawyers, and judges don’t want to feel responsible for the effect a father’s suicide will have on the children who loved him.

I was married for 12-years before the courts stripped away everything that was important to me. I had two sons, a budding career as a TV Meteorologist, and a wife who fell in love with another man.

I wanted to save my marriage, and I offered to forgive her for her affair. She didn’t want my forgiveness: she wanted her new boyfriend, and the courts gave him to her.

The courts in Florida would not let me bring up her affair, because “No Faultâ€￾ divorce laws had made that issue irrelevant.

In the end, they treated me as if I had the affair, because they sentenced me to a life of poverty, isolation from my children, and depression.

I appealed all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States of America, but nobody cared, and now there is hardly any evidence that case No. 04-5334 ever existed.

I still have a copy of the case if anyone is interested, but I will not bore you with any more details in case you are not.





"There are many problems with our current child-support-as-welfare system, not the least, that it is immoral and inhumane: why is a guy turned into a wage-slave for the rest of his life, over something he has no control over?

Also, what message does it send to young men? Why should they even bother going to college or having a career, if they will not be allowed to enjoy the fruit of their work?

And finally, what message does it send to young women? Make as many babies with as many guys as you can, and live off them?

This ideology is basically socialism, and it failed in Eastern Europe, just like it will fail in the US.
"





"Paying mothers to remove fathers from children's lives is government mandated child abuse. If you want more abused children, broken homes, broken families, juvenile delinquents, crime, teen pregnancy, social pathologies, and government control over people's lives, then raise the amount fathers are forced to pay to have their children taken from them.

Just make sure you always blame the fathers for "abandoning" their children, and never mention the fact that children don't have fathers anymore because government bribes mothers to get him out of the house/family/children's lives, then makes dear old dad pay the bribe or go to jail
."
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Postby NorthAmericanguy » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:30 pm

More random comments:


"There's nothing 'FAMLIY' about family court. I was in court for 5.5 years, spent 15K, and was left with nothing. My tax refunds have been taken. I have lost my job and my house. I 'Settled' with a 30K back child support bill to get my passport back to continue to work. I was then told that I have to come up with a 'Lump sum'. I didn't have it. No passport - no job. I will soon be accumlating 1000 per month arrearage. I am on unemployment and the state takes 200 of the 390 per week. I am not mad at my ex. She does not work , and that is her choice. The state can / will put me in jail after the umemployment runs out. So be it. they can support me now."





"Other than in matters of starvation and the like, America has the world distinction of being among the worst places on this planet for a child to grow up. As for America's 'justice', granting that we don't execute people as often as places like China, America has 3.8% of the world's population and ONE QUARTER of the world's prison inmates."





"Though the current system is often unfair to divorced fathers, my concern is about the non-married, non-involved, bio-fathers...the system needs to set up some sort of opt-out option for men...as women have the choices of adoption, abortion, and even more recently, legal abandonment at hospitals, and the fact that the pregnancy occurs in their bodies, which we insist as a people belongs to them, MEN shouldn't have to pay for their reproductive choices. The current system encourages unwed pregnancy, and criminalizes poor men. For some reason, this double standard goes unrecognized by most people. We think that the idea of a woman forced into parenthood by biological reality an anathema...however, a man forced into indentured servitude due to a woman's free choice to become a parent, is seen as right...it's in the interest of the children we are told. Where is that interest protected as regards woman's choice? Men deserve reproductive choice as well. The system is blatantly unfair and te country has blinders on."





"People are panic today from losing their house and jobs. That's little compared to my experience as a father in divorce court. On top of losing a home and jobs (new employers do not like to get a subpoenas), a guy automatically, though he is legally innocent, loses 18 years of income, most of the assets, certain liberties, and gains most of the marital debt.

My support payment were set so high I was driven into bankruptcy. Then the assets that were frozen were distributed to the lawyers and my wife. The divorce was quickly wrapped out after my filling for bankruptcy.

I observe that it is not about getting money to my son. It is about getting money to the mom ($135 haircuts; newer car; $20 manicures; heath club membership, and more) and to strangers; Lawyers and marriage/divorce exports. It is about jobs on the government side. It's about money on the mom's side. My son just wants a father.

America is one of the world leaders in divorce of over 200 countries."





"Warning to men - don't get married, and don't become a father, or you'll become public enemy number one."




"The child support system is unfair to men. First men are treated as childless single bachelors by the tax code because men who pay child support cannot deduct it on their taxes. Also, obtaining a downward modification takes paying a lawyer a lot of money with NO guarantee of a downward modification.
The system is set up to treat everyone as a "potential" dead beat by putting everyone in the national new hire database and automatically taking the child support out of your paycheck. The list goes, on and on...
Then you have public humiliation of men who can't pay on websites and pizza boxes..."





"Child support is just indentured servitude for men. Husbands are nothing more than extensions of women's wallets these days. There is no respect for dads, and consequently young people have little respect for society or the law. Far from being advantaged in comparison to women, the modern American male is a second class citizen, who belong in the home just as long as his wife says he does. After that his rights, paternity and income all belong to her."





"My boyfriend (can't afford to get married) makes 30K a year as an HVAC tech (that's with overtime in upstate NY). His ex-wife has a nice gov't job and makes about 40K; she recently got married to new hubby who makes about 60K a year. There are three minor children from the marriage. My boyfriend pays over 12K right off the top to his ex in child support. after taxes he has approx a whopping 9K to live on. So basically he can't support himself and has to live with someone who can provide shelter, food and clothing."




"Illinois has a similar model to the one that Massachusetts is planning on implementing and I can argue that what Fathers & Families says is true. In Illinois, our child support guidelines are based on a fixed percentage of the non-custodial parent's income. Virtually no consideration is given to the needs of the non-custodial parent's household or to the already existing income that the custodial parent earns. In my case, my ex-wife earns $22K a year tax free and that's on top of her $60K+ income she earns normally. For the first few years, I had to live in a two bedroom apartment with my three children when they visited. Meanwhile, in the first three years following the divorce, I watched as she had corrective eye surgery, bought an expensive new television, new camera equipment, new furniture, remodeled her house, and a new SUV. Clearly a windfall profit."





"I am not a father being crushed by child support or denied visitation - I am a son who was denied my father by the vindictive anger of my mother who BRAGGED about using child support to "get even" with my father.

Several problems are built right into the child support apparatus:

1) Matching federal funds make it a FINANCIAL incentive to collect as much child support because the state receives $.66 of a dollar for each dollar collected.

2) No corresponding enforcement (due IMO to the lack of monetary incentive and the apathy of the courts) is pursued for visitation. While both money and love of both parents are needed, only one gets addressed, and for the most cynical reasons.

Were it that 'it was for the children' then the love of a non-custodial parent, denied to a child, therefore harming a child, then visitation would be as enforced and denial of visitation punished as harshly.

3) The child support is completely unaccountable. It would be a simple matter for each divorcing couple to set up a child support account. With this account would be a debit card. The non-custodial parent would be able to see the account transations but not withdraw the money, while the custodial parent would have easy access (debit card) to the money. Transparency is key to making sure 'child support' does not become 'mommy support'.

4) Massachusetts currently gives the parents of foster children "X" amount of dollars. Apparently this is enough for the NEEDS of the child. Children have wants, but those are not needs. Parents (both custodial and non-custodial) WANT to give their children many things, but wants are not needs.

If the Commonwealth of Massachusetts deems "X" amount of dollars a month given to foster parents "enough" and not "cruel", "stingy", "abandonment" or "depriving" then it follows that citizens who give that same amount are not making their children lack for their NEEDS (not wants).

Our servants apparently want us to do what they are unwilling to do, unable to do (without penalty, unlike non-custodial parents), or deem to be uneeded.

I was denied my father's pressence for 2 decades (when I got to be 18 I had been so poisoned against him I had no interest), and none of the "child support" was apparently saved for my college.

There is a reason - a lack of accountability for the money gained in "child support" and a complete lack of enforcement in visitation ORDERS given by the court.

Children need a parent more than a check."







"Hi my name is mario and I was just put on child support for 378 a month but I'm on unemployment for almost a year and I live in naples florida and I used to make 12 an hour in the fiber optics bussiness the mother of my baby lived with me until november 2008 and I gave her wat I can of money since then and I have proof also she came to pick up her belongings in april 2009 and I have a video and witneses..she picked up her bed clothes important papers crib etc.she told child suppport we been broken up since december 2007 and they say I owe over 7 thousand so my payment is 378 a month and I'm furious I wrote them a letter and still I haven't sent it I will tomorrow but the point is I might start a job now gettin paid 12 an hour again but in a clinic.and my question is should I take her to court to get the 7 thousand removed or having this new job will mean I have to pay more than 378?..what should I do? Plus I want to have my baby every other weekend cause she dosent let me take him is that possible(she lives in miami).thank you"




"I am weeks away from Bankruptcy and have been unemployed for two years.

Since the divorce, eight years ago, i was required to pay $700 per month ($56K).

I have paid the custodial parent ( who makes over 100K a year) $91,000 in Child Support. That does not include several trips to Colorado and one to England with my daughter. Also, i hardly ever get to see her. Now - the HFS is saying i owe $69,000 for the last eight years.

I need help fighting these guys - perhaps a lawyer (I can't afford one)? My life has been ruined - i have no savings now. Has my constitutional rights of innocent until proven guilty been violated?

I have sent them documents of every check i have written - i have them all. They are still denying they are wrong and proceeding with enforcement. They refuse to show how they came up with their figures."






"i know how you feel about bein frustrated about barely scraping by i was making 8 an hour and having 100 a week out of my check only leaving me 100 a week to live on after insurance for car and food to eat was no money left to live anyplace so i had to live in my car for few years and child support place was not willing to adjust amount at all court was not willing to help either cause the one time i did get to go to court when they wanted more cause i got overtime at work for a little while was only willing to raise it so i had to get 2 full time jobs working 16 to 20 hours a day killing myself to eventualy get a place of my own instead of live in car till i told them off in court telling them to stop raising it or i would stop paying and let them put me in prison at least there i would have water elec and food could live better there than on my own then they finnaly backed off so i could live in a house with no cable no phone no gas just a house with elec but it was a home at least"





"Prior to my divorce I never gave child support any thought. My now ex-wife stayed home with our son for most of our marriage, while I worked two jobs. She has a college degree and is capable of making a lot more money than I do, but when the agreed time came for her to get a job she only worked part-time and I had to continue working two jobs and as much over-time as I can get. When we realized the marriage was over we decided to handle it amicably. My ex-wife took all of the money from our savings to hire a lawyer for us both, as a mediator. Very long and painful story short, she in fact hired a lawyer with my money to represent only her. She and her lawyer convinced me that everything I was signing was a great bargain and the most amicable resolution. I make less than 72k and pay $450.00/week in support, this is over 50% of my take home and I have since found out it is also 30% above MA guidelines. I have to borrow money from family and friends each month. I too, as so many fathers have stated, cannot afford to hire a lawyer. I also have my son on my insurance; I have to pay for co-pays and his sports, activities in addition to the support. Believe me if my ex needed the money I wouldn't feel that I am being taken advantage of, but she and my son are living rent free now is a huge home on a lot of acreage with a pool and everything. I want to help, but how is it I am left destitute? Shouldn’t I have a right to shelter and food? The worst part is I have not had any visitation with my son in two years, I continue to pay for everything but when I am supposed to see him she says he doesn’t want to see me. He and I used to be close, I know she and her family are alienating me from him. I miss him so much. I do feel bad for the Mothers that need assistance and aren't getting it, I also feel bad for the father's that got forced into bankruptcy over it. The family court system is unjust. It needs to look at cases on a more individual basis. I had no choice but to represent myself in court and I am paying for it. I know I am not alone in this. Reform is desperately needed."
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