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Amber E.
Amber E., Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1465
Experience:  Experienced practitioner in family law, including divorce, custody, and domestic violence cases.
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I have a daughter that is 8 in which my parents have had guardianship

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I have a daughter that is 8 in which my parents have had guardianship all but about 20 months of her life due to the fact that her mom had a lot of issues and i work overseas a majority of the time. Her mom recently just had our daughter move back in with her but my parents still retain guardianship. I just got a letter from Oklahoma DHS saying that i owe back child support for 16,000 dollars but up until now have never been told to pay anything before. They recently garnished my checks for the regular child support payments which they said for oklahoma is the way that they take the monthly payments, then turned around two months later and cut it off because my ex had not turned in the paperwork that had told her to. Can they make me pay back child support to my ex for time that my daughter was not living with her?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Amber E. replied 6 years ago.
Q. Can they make me pay back child support to my ex for time that my daughter was not living with her?

You stated that you were never contacted. This is a problem. You should have been served and given an opportunity to respond, before the initial child support order was issued. You should contact the clerk of court and review the paperwork to confirm that service was proper; if it was not proper, then the order may be nullified.

To answer your question, assuming the child support obligation is valid and that the order will not be nullified, then you have to pay it. Your parents, though, are entitled to what is owed to them, so they should be the ones to receive the arrearage. It will, however, be their responsibility to contact DHS or the DA's office to ensure that they receive what is owed to them.
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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Saying that my parents have no interest in receiving any child support then should i only have to pay child support to my ex for the time that she had custody of our daughter?
Expert:  Amber E. replied 6 years ago.
Yes, your ex is only entitled to support for the time that she had the child.

Your parents, if they are not interested in support, can file a motion to have the debt to them deemed paid in full. That is assuming, of course, that they were not on public assistance. If they were, then the debt to the state would have to be paid up first.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Since they have never filed anything to receive child support would it just be assumed by the state that they should get it or would the states only concern be with what is owed to the ex since she filed. They are not on any public assistance.
Expert:  Amber E. replied 6 years ago.
If your ex filed, then the state may not know anything about your parents having had guardianship and may assume that the entire amount is owed to your ex. Therefore, your parents may have to intervene in the action to ensure that she does not get more than what she is owed. Alternatively, you may file a motion to reduce the amount owed to her on the basis that she did not have the child, and bring your parents to cour to testify to that, along with a copy of the guardianship papers.