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  1. #1
    screwed in PA is offline Junior Member
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    child support for 50/50 custody

    What is the name of your state? PA

    I pay my ex $850 a month for 2 children I have 50/50 custody of. A third is in college. I pay for the insurance coverage as well as 70% of uncovered medical (court ordered) as well as 1/3 college. We have an agreement for 6 years now to split incidentals 50/50 (lunches, field trips, sports registration, equip, clothes, etc.) but it's not court ordered. Now my ex has decided on her own to change the rules to suit herself. She says from here on out she will only pay 30% and that I am also responsible for 100% of my college aged daughter's expenses, even her birth control pills.

    What is child support to be used for in a 50/50 custody arrangement? How can I fight her on this? She has made up her own rules for the last 6 years and I am tired of it.
  2. #2
    TinkerBelleLuvr is offline Senior Member
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    http://www.humanservices.state.pa.us/CSWS/CSWS_controller.aspx?SelectionIdBottom=3&PageId=CSWS/faq.ascx#BQ1Link

    Pennsylvania law establishes that both parents are liable for the support of their children who are unemancipated and 18 years of age or younger. However, parents may be liable for the support of their children who are 18 years of age or older. For example, a support obligation may continue for a child who is 18 and still attending high school. When a child is emancipated, or over 18 years of age and no longer attending high school, one of the parents may file a "Petition for Modification of an Existing Support Order" to request that the child support order be stopped. See Question and Answer #3 for more information. Additionally, there may be other situations, such as the existence of physical or emotional challenges, when parents may be required to pay support for a child who is 18 years of age or older.
    Sounds like it's time to go back for a modification of child support.

    PS - why can't the college student be liable for her own expenses?
  3. #3
    screwed in PA is offline Junior Member
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    50/50 custody with support

    Hi Ginny,

    I appreciate your response, but we are trying to find out who covers what for my minor children when I have 50/50 custody and am paying support. It's always been 50% of incidental expenses (clothes, sports, lunches ... ) until my ex decided after 6 years that she was going to only pay 30%. The arrangement was never put into the divorce agreement.

    We had a support modification when our oldest graduated HS and I am not paying support through domestics for her ... although I am now paying more for 2 kids than I had for 3!

    Thanks again,
    Screwed in PA
  4. #4
    LdiJ is online now Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by screwed in PA View Post
    Hi Ginny,

    I appreciate your response, but we are trying to find out who covers what for my minor children when I have 50/50 custody and am paying support. It's always been 50% of incidental expenses (clothes, sports, lunches ... ) until my ex decided after 6 years that she was going to only pay 30%. The arrangement was never put into the divorce agreement.

    We had a support modification when our oldest graduated HS and I am not paying support through domestics for her ... although I am now paying more for 2 kids than I had for 3!

    Thanks again,
    Screwed in PA
    Technically, in a 50/50 situation, you are each responsible for the children's expenses during your time, and joint expenses should be split.

    If child support is ordered in a 50/50 situation, it means that the parent's respective incomes are unequal, and the purpose of child support is to equalize the children's standard of living in both homes.

    I honestly can't tell you how a judge would rule if you went back to court on these issues.
    Since you are court ordered to cover 70% of uninsured medical its possible that the judge may feel that you should be responsible of 70% of the other shared expenses. Its also possible that a judge would agree with you that you should only be responsible for 50%. Some things may even vary. School lunches for example are something that its virtually guaranteed that you are only responsible for, on the days that you have the kids, but graduation expenses, on the other hand, might be split according a formula.

    As far as your daughter's college expenses are concerned, that depends a great deal on exactly what your court orders say regarding college. If they are silent on the issue, then neither one of you are required to pay ANY college expenses. Therefore mom could absolutely refuse to pay any college expenses, but you could also. If they address college expenses, then you are both required to follow the orders. Can mom legitimately afford the college expenses? Some parents flat out can't.....and when that happens, its time for kiddo to get student loans.

    If the two of you have two more kids headed to college, then it may also be time for the kiddos to get student loans.

    Before you do ANYTHING however, please do some research and google for an online child support calculator for your state. If your child support orders have not been modified in the last 6 years, you do run a potential risk in taking anything to court now. If your income has increased in the last six year, taking these issues to court could potentially result in a child support increase for you.

    I have seen many parents take these kinds of issues to court, without doing that kind of research first, only to end up with significantly higher child support orders.
  5. #5
    nextwife is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by screwed in PA View Post
    Hi Ginny,

    I appreciate your response, but we are trying to find out who covers what for my minor children when I have 50/50 custody and am paying support. It's always been 50% of incidental expenses (clothes, sports, lunches ... ) until my ex decided after 6 years that she was going to only pay 30%. The arrangement was never put into the divorce agreement.

    We had a support modification when our oldest graduated HS and I am not paying support through domestics for her ... although I am now paying more for 2 kids than I had for 3!

    Thanks again,
    Screwed in PA
    If the CO says you pay 50%, and only your ex's practice of what was paid changed, then you are not liable for more than 50%. Pay what's in the CO and no more. Pay your college child what is in the decree, and you and your college kid can work our anything more .
  6. #6
    wondreing is offline Member
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    Since your court order states that you are only required to pay 70% of medical and has no mention of any other incidentals, you haven't even been required to pay the 50% that you and your ex verablly agreed to cover for everything else. I wouldn't start paying 70% of those costs just because she says you have to. You need to show her the wording of your order. And if college isn't mentioned at all, I would flat out tell her that you aren't responsible for any of the tuition because PA doesn't make you pay for your adult children's college costs. She should be happy you agreed to help at all since a lot of parents make their children get jobs and loans to cover most college costs.

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