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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 118806
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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Due to substance abuse, my stepsons mother lost all custody

Customer Question

Due to substance abuse, my stepsons mother lost all custody two years ago. She was recently awarded 50% legal and visitation. My husband no longer pays child support and has not for the past two years. We would like her to contribute financially to his extracurricular activities and child care, however we dont know how to approach her and are afraid of opening ourselves up to paying her support. She barely works full time and is supported by her boyfriend (also father of her second child), however our income is significantly greater. Help would be appreciated!
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
So your husband still has the child in his custody? She just has legal and visitation, not custody?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
my husband has custody and the child lives with us. She has 50% legal and visitation only.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
So, as long as your husband has the custody he can seek support, but if the court finds that your husband's income (not your income) is significantly higher than her income, the court would not order her to pay much more than maybe minimum support. However, the court could find that because of the inequitable income that he needs to pay her some modified amount for the time she has the child (it is rare, but it is possible). The gain for what you could lose would usually not justify the legal fees and time going to court if she has no income as you said and it could result in the court making your husband give her some amount for the times when she has visitations.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Does the court take into consideration that she could earn more if she worked more hours? She is capable but does not...Would it work against us to ask her to help us pay for his extracurricular activities (agreed upon) and child care?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
If she is not working full time and the court finds she could be working full time and is intentionally under employed, the court could attribute full time wages to her, yes. It would not work against you to ask for the extracurricular fees if it was agreed upon or any other fee that was agreed upon, since there was an agreement for her to pay those.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.One more thing... would the second child (now three), who is not my husband's be a viable reason for her not to work full time in the eyes of the court? She worked full time when she was married to my husband...
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
If the child is*****could consider her need to stay with the child until the child is of school age as good cause for her not to work. However, if reasonable and adequate daycare is available, then the court would tell the parent to get daycare for the child or have the father stay home to care for the child, since he is responsible for his child as much as she is.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She claims she is supported by her boyfriend (father of three year old)... claims she doesnt pay rent, utilities etc on her declaration.Would his income be considered?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
No it would not be income, but it would be grounds for the court to impute income to her for being intentionally unemployed or under employed.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We spent a lot of money in court recently to keep physical custody. We can barely afford our own bills... she is trying to get us to pay hers. How can we safe guard against that? We may be taking a personal loan to pay off our own..She was ordered to AA classes and psych counseling weekly - can we ask her for proof?
We are also allowed to alcohol/drug test her randomly.. how do we go about this?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
You are not liable for her bills, only the bills for the child. So the only way to safeguard that is go to court for a support order if she will not just pay the extracurricular activities as agreed and prove to the court she is willfully unemployed and ask the court to impute income to her to make her pay support.
As part of your motion, you can ask the court for the order to have her submit proof of the participation in counseling and also for orders for the drug test.