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  1. #1
    allhaileris is offline Junior Member
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    Unhappy Jail time for non-payment?

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? CA

    My husband was arrested a few weeks ago during a traffic stop for contempt of court in Orange County. 1 count of failure to appear and 13 counts of failing to pay child support. These are from 2000/2001 and he went to court in Sonoma county to settle his child support for kid#2 and they tacked on the support for kid#1 at the same time. He had no idea that this was still sitting there.

    He says he did get the supena a day before he moved out of state (planned move, not an escape). He did not pay at the time because his mother was going crazy with Alzheimers ans was paying for her care, his GF was pregnant and had kid#2 and I think he was tapped emotionally and financially. His mother is now dead.

    He has been paying for both kids since he went to court in Sonoma, but it's never been what it should've been. He's mostly a SAHD, but earns some money part time so he can pay at least something. Yes, I've bugged him for years trying to get him to get a job, even a part time one but he refuses. BUT, he does take care of our daughter who is special needs, I'm dealing with 24/7 pain and depression, and I work because he could never make what I make.

    I can not have him go to jail. He'll crack, he already has some issues and has been a complete nut since he got arrested. He keeps saying he's going to spend like a year in jail. How likely will he have to do this? He has no other record. Can they give him some other punishment instead so he can support his family? I can't afford to pay for a babysitter for my daughter for afterschool care and make too much for any aid. Will they take into account that he has been paying half his paycheck for many years? What is the reality in all of this? What is most likely to happen?

    And please, no bashing. I'm fragile enough as it is right now.
    Last edited by allhaileris; 09-25-2008 at 02:59 PM.
  2. #2
    Zephyr is offline Senior Member
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    How much in arrears is he? And how close to that amount in cash can you come up with from savings or the sale of an item etc? The more he can pay on the back amount...the better it will go for him in court.
  3. #3
    Gracie3787 is offline Senior Member
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    Normally the court does not take into consideration things like having to take care of parents, other children, etc. The law is that his first priority is his first children.

    IF he had been working full time, and paying half of his income consitantly, the court might have taken that into consideration. However, he has made a huge mistake by voluntarily being under employed. Unfortunately there is no way of fixing that now, except by paying as much as possible now and then when he's realeased he needs to find a full time job.
  4. #4
    allhaileris is offline Junior Member
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    He owes like $50K (I know, a horrible amount). We can not pay anything right now. I don't even know how I'm going to pay my rent this month and everything else. Our only car broke down the past weekend on top of all this

    He says he won't survive jail. Will they really put him away now for something that was done so long ago and he's been paying at least something. His daughter is 20 as well, living out of the house so all he's doing now is paying back support.

    We obviously can't afford a lawyer. We can't afford anything right now. I told him to right up a letter stating he screwed up, here are the circumstances now, he thought it was taken care of when we went to court in Sonoma, etc. Wouldn't it be better for him to stay OUT, keep paying support and if anything force him to get a night job or something? What alternative are there to jail? There was some code I saw online saying that first time offenders usually get 3 years probation. Both of us could deal with that, and throw in some community service or something.

    And can he stress that he has a special needs child that needs more attention then a regular kid? We have her in an alternative school where the parents have to put in about 12 hrs of class time a month. That is one of his duties. I can not work, take care of her after school, be there at school, and help run his part time business without him (oh yeah, and try to stay sane as well).
  5. #5
    Isis1 is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by allhaileris View Post
    He owes like $50K (I know, a horrible amount). We can not pay anything right now. I don't even know how I'm going to pay my rent this month and everything else. Our only car broke down the past weekend on top of all this

    He says he won't survive jail. Will they really put him away now for something that was done so long ago and he's been paying at least something. His daughter is 20 as well, living out of the house so all he's doing now is paying back support.

    We obviously can't afford a lawyer. We can't afford anything right now. I told him to right up a letter stating he screwed up, here are the circumstances now, he thought it was taken care of when we went to court in Sonoma, etc. Wouldn't it be better for him to stay OUT, keep paying support and if anything force him to get a night job or something? What alternative are there to jail? There was some code I saw online saying that first time offenders usually get 3 years probation. Both of us could deal with that, and throw in some community service or something.

    And can he stress that he has a special needs child that needs more attention then a regular kid? We have her in an alternative school where the parents have to put in about 12 hrs of class time a month. That is one of his duties. I can not work, take care of her after school, be there at school, and help run his part time business without him (oh yeah, and try to stay sane as well).
    then it looks as if you will have to beg, borrow, or take out a loan. he's going to have to do some fast taking to the judge to get out of this one.

    saying he will not survive jail is a defeatest attitude. he will have to. or he will be leaving YOU to take care of your child all alone, doing all the things you claim is going to cause you to lose your sanity.
  6. #6
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by allhaileris View Post
    He owes like $50K (I know, a horrible amount). We can not pay anything right now. I don't even know how I'm going to pay my rent this month and everything else. Our only car broke down the past weekend on top of all this

    He says he won't survive jail. Will they really put him away now for something that was done so long ago and he's been paying at least something. His daughter is 20 as well, living out of the house so all he's doing now is paying back support.

    We obviously can't afford a lawyer. We can't afford anything right now. I told him to right up a letter stating he screwed up, here are the circumstances now, he thought it was taken care of when we went to court in Sonoma, etc. Wouldn't it be better for him to stay OUT, keep paying support and if anything force him to get a night job or something? What alternative are there to jail? There was some code I saw online saying that first time offenders usually get 3 years probation. Both of us could deal with that, and throw in some community service or something.

    And can he stress that he has a special needs child that needs more attention then a regular kid? We have her in an alternative school where the parents have to put in about 12 hrs of class time a month. That is one of his duties. I can not work, take care of her after school, be there at school, and help run his part time business without him (oh yeah, and try to stay sane as well).
    I am not bashing you, but its very important that you understand the reality of the situation that he (and you by extension) are facing.

    That 50k is not going to go away. The courts don't care if he works or not, but they care whether or not he pays his child support. They are going to continue to go after him for this money, for the rest of his life, and the interest is just going to keep on growing.

    If there is no way that he can come up with a purge amount (borrow from his family or something) then the best thing he can do for himself is to get a job RIGHT NOW, ANY job that will at least earn him enough to pay his monthly ordered amount, in full, and start paying with his entire first paycheck, and then his second paycheck, and then his third paycheck, and so on.

    Please understand, they will be garnishing his social security check when he hits retirement age (assuming that he has earned enough social security credits to even get a check).

    Therefore this hearing/trial doesn't end things. Even if he goes to jail for a year, they will expect him to start paying when he gets out.

    So, please encourage him to make whatever effort he can to prove to the courts that he is working and will be paying.
  7. #7
    seniorjudge is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LdiJ View Post
    ...
    So, please encourage him to make whatever effort he can to prove to the courts that he is working and will be paying.
    ...


    Yep.

    Oh...I'm sorry. You don't like my short answers.

    Yep, I agree with you one hundred percent when you told the poster to encourage him to make whatever effort he can to prove to the courts that he is working and will be paying, which I fully concur with and agree on 100% of the points therein set forth.
    There are two rules for success:

    (1) Never tell everything you know.
  8. #8
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by seniorjudge View Post
    Yep.

    Oh...I'm sorry. You don't like my short answers.

    Yep, I agree with you one hundred percent when you told the poster to encourage him to make whatever effort he can to prove to the courts that he is working and will be paying, which I fully concur with and agree on 100% of the points therein set forth.
    Come on SJ, I had trouble with one of your short answers, ONE time.
  9. #9
    seniorjudge is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LdiJ View Post
    Come on SJ, I had trouble with one of your short answers, ONE time.
    It's only kinky the first time.
    There are two rules for success:

    (1) Never tell everything you know.
  10. #10
    Humusluvr is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by seniorjudge View Post
    It's only kinky the first time.
    Then you are doing it wrong.
  11. #11
    allhaileris is offline Junior Member
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    I totally get the getting a job thing, my husband doesn't (sort of). He basically is self employed as a distributor for a company. The company sends him a commission check each month, the amount goes up or down depending on his sales. The past couple years it's been lower because, well, his busniess has been sucky and their payplan changed. Now that our daughter is in 1st grade and in school for most of the day he can be out beating the pavement trying to get leads, he has been doing that but the economy sucks, blah blah blah. He's trying, he really is. Then there is the issue that because he has to go to court on Oct 1, he's missing out on a decent paying job!! He's been apprenticing with a guy doing balloon flights and has the opportunity to go to NM with him that week and make like $3k but no, he has to miss out on it because of court!

    He won't be able to find a job before court. I'm guessing all he can do is tell the judge that he is working, but because he's not hourly it's not a steady amount. Half does go to child support though. At least he finally has some leads for sales. It's not that he's chosing to be underemployed, his sales just suck lately. There have been months where he's payed somewhere near what his monthly amount is not counting back payments, just not lately (like the past year or two).

    And yes, I know this will haunt him forever. I know I'll never be able to leave the country with him. I know the reality in all of this. I'm the grounded one here.

    So...I'm guessing if he can prove to the judge that his business is picking up (which it has been a little at a time) then that will help in some way? It's not like he's chosing to work at some minimum wage job 10 hrs a week. He often spends way too much time and energy to just not get it in return, but like I said, he's in a little upswing.

    Jail punishes me and not him (well of course him, but I have to deal with the fallout). Thank you for those who have given me some brainstormign ideas. I need those little tidbits to help my thinking. Keep those ideas coming!

    Oh, and he has NO family. His dad abandoned him at a young age after beating him and his mom is dead, no siblings. His extended family is all super-religous and he's not so they wont' "accept" him (I've never even met them). Any borrowing is done from my family and I've tapped them enough when I was out of work last year. I know there is no way to borrow any money at all. We don't own a house so there is no chance to take out a loan on that.

    And thanks for the little bit of humor. I need it right now.
  12. #12
    seniorjudge is offline Senior Member
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    I'll say it plainly.

    GET A JOB!
    There are two rules for success:

    (1) Never tell everything you know.
  13. #13
    Zephyr is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by allhaileris View Post
    I totally get the getting a job thing, my husband doesn't (sort of). He basically is self employed as a distributor for a company. The company sends him a commission check each month, the amount goes up or down depending on his sales. The past couple years it's been lower because, well, his busniess has been sucky and their payplan changed. Now that our daughter is in 1st grade and in school for most of the day he can be out beating the pavement trying to get leads, he has been doing that but the economy sucks, blah blah blah. He's trying, he really is. Then there is the issue that because he has to go to court on Oct 1, he's missing out on a decent paying job!! He's been apprenticing with a guy doing balloon flights and has the opportunity to go to NM with him that week and make like $3k but no, he has to miss out on it because of court!

    He won't be able to find a job before court. I'm guessing all he can do is tell the judge that he is working, but because he's not hourly it's not a steady amount. Half does go to child support though. At least he finally has some leads for sales. It's not that he's chosing to be underemployed, his sales just suck lately. There have been months where he's payed somewhere near what his monthly amount is not counting back payments, just not lately (like the past year or two).

    And yes, I know this will haunt him forever. I know I'll never be able to leave the country with him. I know the reality in all of this. I'm the grounded one here.

    So...I'm guessing if he can prove to the judge that his business is picking up (which it has been a little at a time) then that will help in some way? It's not like he's chosing to work at some minimum wage job 10 hrs a week. He often spends way too much time and energy to just not get it in return, but like I said, he's in a little upswing.

    Jail punishes me and not him (well of course him, but I have to deal with the fallout). Thank you for those who have given me some brainstormign ideas. I need those little tidbits to help my thinking. Keep those ideas coming!

    Oh, and he has NO family. His dad abandoned him at a young age after beating him and his mom is dead, no siblings. His extended family is all super-religous and he's not so they wont' "accept" him (I've never even met them). Any borrowing is done from my family and I've tapped them enough when I was out of work last year. I know there is no way to borrow any money at all. We don't own a house so there is no chance to take out a loan on that.

    And thanks for the little bit of humor. I need it right now.
    Yes, I've bugged him for years trying to get him to get a job, even a part time one but he refuses.


    Walmart is almost always hiring
  14. #14
    CourtClerk is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zephyr View Post

    Walmart is almost always hiring
    So is McDonalds
  15. #15
    allhaileris is offline Junior Member
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    Just an update - they dismissed the case. Apparently it had been too long and they couldn't find any paperwork. Combine that with the fact he has been paying at least something for many years, let his public defender ask to get the case dismissed, it was granted with no arguement.

    I figured somebody down the road looking for this type of into might want to know the resolution.

    When he went to the first court case the DA wanted to put him away for 7.5 years. Apparently in Orange County it's not a max of 5 days per month, but 6 months per month of non-payed support. My DH got the OC family support division to send over copies of all the paid receipts, which (I'm assuming) kept the DA from pushing the case.

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