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AttorneyTom, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
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I pay 25% of my income to my ex-wife for child support of our

Resolved Question:

I pay 25% of my income to my ex-wife for child support of our two children. She uses this money in part to pay for after-school care during the school year. She is also using it to pay for summer daycare during her weeks of possession.

My question is, is she obligated to pay for summer daycare during the 4 work-weeks that I have possession of the children? After all, I am continuing to pay her child support every month even though I have extended possession during the summer. If she refuses to pay for daycare during those weeks, what is my recourse?

Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  AttorneyTom replied 5 years ago.
Hello. Thank you for coming to JustAnswer. I am Thoreau and I am sending this answer to you only a few minutes after you asked your question.
I'm sorry that you're having to deal with that added expense. Unless a court order specifies otherwise, the parent who places the child in daycare pays for the daycare. For the custodial parent, the noncustodial parent's portion of the expense is covered through child support. A noncustodial parent can ask a court for relief in that regard and he can ask the court to require the custodial parent to pay all or a portion of daycare expenses incurred during an extended visitation period. The court then considers relevant factors to determine whether or not to grant the request.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

In response to your answer, I am left wondering two things:


1. What are the 'relevant factors' that the court would consider? I am assuming that daycare is one of the costs that should be covered with the money I am giving to her every month. In addition, her work income is higher than mine. For what kind of reasons would the court NOT grant relief in this case?


2. I am concerned that the cost of taking this to court would be greater than the amount of relief that I would be granted. Would this require a full hearing to be decided, or are there other means of having the court grant the request? Do you think it would be a good strategy to have my lawyer set a hearing date to see whether this action alone may change her mind?

Expert:  AttorneyTom replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for your message.
The court would consider the incomes of the parents, the extent of the need for daycare, the cost of daycare, whether the issue was accounted for in the original support order (as it may have been), whether a change of circumstances justifies a modification even if it was previously accounted for. Such a modification would require a court appearance and it's true that the cost can potentially outweigh the benefit. However, the court may order her to pay your attorney's fees if it determines that she is more able to do so than you are. The place to start would be to take the matter to your attorney so that he can draft a letter to her. The letter may resolve it. If not, you should defer to your attorney's professional judgment with regard to strategy and the cost-benefit analysis from there, as your attorney is best positioned to make that determination for you.
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