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Thomas Swartz
Thomas Swartz, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 3154
Experience:  Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
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After my divorce I remarried and because my current husband

Customer Question

After my divorce I remarried and because my current husband makes $150,000 to $250,000 I chose not to work. Now my current husband is getting on me for spending money for me and my children from my previous marriage (ages 10 and 15). So instead of working I am choosing to go after my ex husband who only makes about $40,000 for child support. My ex has a new wife, and a 15 monto old with her and i have a 2 1/2 year old with my new husband. Does it matter that I have chosen not to work? When going after my ex for child support can they factor in my current husbands income? Does my ex pick up the financial slack because I don't want to work?
I live in union county nc
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 10 months ago.

Hello Amanda,

Yes, it does matter that you chose not to work. When seeking child support or modifying an existing child support order, a court will take into consideration many factors including the parties income, the children's basic needs, etc. It will then apply a set of child support guidelines to determine how much of an award is made. You can use this Calculator - Child Support Calculator - to get a rough idea of a child support award. However, if a spouse had been working and chooses not to work a court may impute income to that spouse to figure out the other spouse's financial obligation. In other words, a court can figure out what a person's earning capacity is based on prior work experience/education etc., and can use that figure to determine the parent’s child support obligation.

Does your new husband's income matter? - Possibly. A new spouse generally does not have any legal obligation to support child from a previous marriage. However, if the new spouse takes on a parental role with respect to your children, a court may take into consideration this in determining your ex-husband's obligation because the children's needs are being met by your new spouse.

Please take a look at Remarriage and Child Support North Carolina.


Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I stopped working when I got married.... so it's been a while. Can I go after my exes va military disability too
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
My ex is worki ng it's me that isnt, I chose not to, so does he pick up the financial slack?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I'm the female, the custodial parent, I want to go after my exhusband, there's nothing in nc law that says it matters if I work, they can't take income from me if I have none personally. I guess I'm just not understanding it
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 10 months ago.

Did you stop working when you first got married, or when you got married the second time?

And was there any child support order issued when you got divorced?


Customer: replied 10 months ago.
No child support issued after divorce, I really have not pushed the kids to see their dad and pretty much havnt consulted on any decisions I've made, he asks to see them and they are always busy, I stopped working when I got remarried to my now husband and he has been financially supporting all of us since 2013, but now he's getting tired of it!
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 10 months ago.

Since no child support was issued by the court initially, in order to get child support now you would have to prove to the court a substantial change in circumstances in your finances or the children's needs. Your decision to stop working is a substantial change of circumstances. However, since this was a voluntary decision and not due to something like an illness, a court might look unfavorably at your request for your husband to now "pick up the slack." And so, a court may impute income to you, or determine what you had been making before, and take this into consideration or how much your ex-husband should pay.

Also, if your new husband is providing parental support to the children (i.e. he is meeting some of their financial needs), a court would also take this into consideration in determining what you ex-husband should pay.