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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 35773
Experience:  Attorney with 16 years experience
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My ex-husband and I have been divorced years. My youngest

Customer Question

Hello
My ex-husband and I have been divorced for 3 years. My youngest daughter is still in college and lives with me. Our divorce decree states that my ex-husband and I are responsible for her living expenses until she is emancipated. He refuses to pay for any of her living expenses other than sharing the expense of her cell phone which he has not paid for in 3 years. He will not pay for her food, comcast, internet and other living expenses. My ex lives in Florida and my daughter and I live in Massachusetts. Should I retain a lawyer at his expense for the substantial amount of money he owes me? Thank you for your time. Karen
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes and ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

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Does your divorce decree specify what "living expenses" are or does it just use that language?

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Does she have some type of separate account for her own internet, cable, etc. separate and independent from the services you maintain in your home?

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi BarristerI am trying to find my divorce decree so that I can accurately answer your question. I will get back to you as soon as I locate it.Thank you
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.

10-4, no worries. The question will remain open as long as you need it to..

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi BarristerI found the divorce decree. Thank you for your patience. In the agreement it reads:Alimony and Child Support"In consideration of the terms of this Agreement there shall be no child support payment. However, Lia's reasonable expenses, including but not limited to dining, entertainment and clothing (a maximum of $3000 - $1500 per party per year for dining, entertainment and clothing), cell phone costs and automobile expenses (gas during the periods that Lia is working, auto insurance, repairs and excise tax) shall be shared equally until such time as Lia is emancipated as defined herein."Currently my ex-husband and I each give her $400/month. So not only do I match what he contributes I am also paying for Lia to live with me i.e. comcast, phone, food, heat, etc. Lia is a full-time student and works part-time.My questions to you is do you think I have grounds to sue him?Thanks, Karen
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.

Ok, if he is giving her $400 a month, that is $4800 a year so that would cover the $1500 per person for dining, entertainment and clothing he is obligated to pay and leave $3300 for cell phone and auto expenses..

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So if you can show where the $3300 doesn't cover half the cell phone bill and the auto expenses, then I think you have a case here against the ex.

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But as for household expenses like cable and internet, if that isn't specified in the order then you would have to argue that this is a "reasonable expense" that he should pay half for.

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Personally, I don't think a judge would agree because you would be paying for cable and internet whether she was living with you or not and the payments are to cover additional expenses that you would incur only because she is living with you.

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thanks

Barrister