My husband has a hearing tomorrow with a County Commissioner (via phone) for a modification of child support. We are representing ourselves and are not sure how to appropriately address the Commissioner. Any other pointers would be greatly appreciated as well.
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Washington
Thank you for posting your question to JA/Pearl. Legal questions often take time for research or I may be offline so please be patient, I will reply.Who filed for the modification? Why are you appearing by telephone? What paperwork have you actually filed with the court?
His ex filed for the modification on the basis that their son, who just turned 18 and graduated high school, is developmentally disabled and will require continued child support, post-secondary support and education assistance. While we are not disputing the fact that he will need additional assistance from his parents for support, we are just trying to make the case that we know that she has been recieving a substantial amount of disability assistance from the Canadian Government to date, so it is pretty natural to assume that she is utilizing the same types of benefits reserved for adults with disabilities on his behalf. We just want complete transparency when deciding on what she gets on his behalf because we have concerns that she may be trying to take advantage of the situation for her own benefit. We are appearing by telephone because we live out of state. We have filed a Response of the Petitioner to Petition for Modification of Child Support, a Response/Declaration of Petitioner to Motion for Temporary Order (6 page declaration, our Sealed Financial Source Documents, Financial Declaration and Support Schedule Worksheet and Declaration from a witness on our behalf. Sorry, that was a lot longer than I intended for it to be.
It appears that you have properly filed all of the required financial documents. It is now too late but you could have asked for her financial information in advance so you would have a copy of it for the hearing. I am not familiar with what she may be receiving from the Canadian government. However, since he is 18, I would assume that he may be eligible for SSI. One question I would want to know is whether she has filed for SSI or not. That should amount to around 650.00 per month if the child is not receiving any additional support such as child support. Child support may reduce the amount that would otherwise be received from SSI.What I usually recommend in such a situation is to have the court order any child support money go into a supplemental needs trust so it does not reduce the amount of the SSI and result in a lower child support payment. Any disability assistance that she is receiving should be added into her income for the purpose of the calculation. If she is not showing any on her financial declaration, you should be allowed by the judge to ask her about it and any other sources of income that she may have. Here is the case law that is directly on pointhttp://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=12464992560482402475&q=863+P.2d+585&hl=en&as_sdt=2,41
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