I have been paying child and spousal support for 12 years. My eldest son has completed 4 years of University and has not lived at home (with his mother) for 4 years. My youngest son has completed 2 years of University and has not live at home (with his mother) for 2 years. I have fulfilled my obligations to my eldest son, who is now on a full scholarship for his masters in the US. I have proposed to my ex-wife to stop payment for my eldest, stop spousal - since she has a full time teaching job (has for 10 years) and I have paid spousal for longer than we were married, and to pay support for my second son directly to my son......I don't think I'm being unreasonable but she refuses to answer my calls or email. Do I need to go through court again to stop these payments. I don't have any trouble supporting my children and will always help them but I don't see why I should have to continue spousal support when she is capable of supporting herself and neither child has resided with her for years.
several phone messages and emails - not nasty ones either, just trying to be fair and state the facts.
We have always had a "civil" relationship but she won't acknowledge this....I'm assuming because she's about to lose a large portion of her income. I'd rather not have lawyers and courts involved. It's an unnecessary expense but I'm afraid it will head in that direction so I'd like to know what my next step should be.
If the court order does not have any end date or you do not fit into any term that sets out when support will end, then you will need either consent of the mother or a court order to change the support. If she will not respond to emails or so on, maybe a letter from a lawyer will be more effective, threatening that if she does not consent you will seek that she pay court costs or legal fees. The court has the ability to make such an order and would do so if they found her position to be unreasonable. Child support for an adult child is payable if that child is unable to withdraw from parental charge, and needs assistance in meeting his own expenses. The court has found that children attending a masters program can remain under parental charge. This is not common, as often courts will find that a child at such an age, and with a bachelor's degree, should be financially capable of being self sufficient. Where they have ordered that a child remains entitled to support is where the family is well able to afford this, there is a history of paying such expenses for other children, or the parents have such levels of education themselves, or the undergraduate degree in particular would not likely lead to financial self sufficiency. If the child is under parental charge, the court will then look at his own ability to contribute to expenses, such as from a scholarship or income. If the child cannot meet all the expenses from those resources, then parents can be ordered to pay the shortfall..often by dividing this in proportion to their incomes. So with a full scholarship, even if support were to continue, it could be decreased significantly. Spousal support can be reduced or terminated by a court if it concludes that a spouse has now been sufficiently compensated for any economic disadvantage arising out of the marriage, and is capable of being financially self sufficient with reduced or no spousal support. The court can also assess if a spouse has made all reasonable efforts to achieve financial self-sufficiency, and if not that is a factor arguing in favour of reducing or terminating support. The next step may be a formal letter to her, from you or a lawyer on your behalf, setting out your position and argument as to why support should change, and what will occur if she continues to ignore the matter, namely a court application seeking such an order plus court and legal costs payable by her.