Monday, July 11, 2011

Record Setting Child Support Hearing

Okay, this one is not about celebrities, but I couldn't believe it when I read it.    It is record setting not because of the amount.    $14K in back child support is nothing these days.   It's how long the case has gone on.   The divorce was finalized in 1977.  Yeah, last century.  

Apparently, when the couple split, Dad agreed to pay Mom $14K in child support and half of the sale of the house.   He sold the house and kept all the money.   Mom has been fighting ever since.   She lost on everything related to not getting the money from the house.   I don't know why.    Then she found out that child support enforcement has no statute of limitations.    I can bet Dad thought with the kids grown, he was home free.    Dad thought wrong.   With interest and penalties it is now over 100K he owes*.

He could have been over and done with it long ago.   Now he is 77 years old and still dealing with it.    I know I don't want to still be dealing with old debts when I am 77.  

Mom is not exactly into moving on either.   She is still apparently bitter over the divorce.   Telling your ex he is "stuck on stupid" is really not a good way to resolve things.   Folks tend to get less agreeable the more you call them stupid.   I want to know how she has afforded a lawyer all these years.   At some point, realizing a contingency fee was not going to come through (you can take collection on a contingency fee, not the custody proceedings), the attorney was going to want something for the time and effort spent.   Attorneys only have their time and effort to sell, it deserves reasonable compensation.

The moral here:   pay your child support when incurred, unless you want your social security garnished.  The other moral:   name calling is incredibly unhelpful in family law proceedings.  

* I have no idea why the tax refunds were not withheld.   Guess no one thought to do that, even though it is routine now.