Child Support Issues: decrease in pay and less visitation?
by Juila Porter
I'm a NCP and I have been order by the court to get my child every weekend and pay 350 in CS. But, I havent been able to. I work 10 hours shifts 5-6 days a week and get off at 8pm and dont have anyone to pick my child up or watch her while im at work. The mother dosnt seem to care that i havnt been getting her aslong as she gets the cs she fine. We have both rencently move and im about an hour away.I cant afford the gas, and im barely paying my bills my income has decrease by $1000-1500. Im afraid that if i file a motion to have the child support decrease that she will mention that i dont get my daughter. what can i do? will she also get in trouble? can i tell the court that i would be able to get her every other weekend so i wont be inviolation of the court order?
Here's the thing. Child support is "Support for the child". It's not a bartering tool. If you are unable (for whatever reason) to pick up your child every weekend (as ordered), that is not grounds for decreasing child support. If anything, you are providing less time/care for the child and may be ordered to pay more since the custodial parent is caring for/paying for the child during "your" ordered time.
Now, if your pay has decreased significantly, then that is a different matter. That fact can be presented to the court and evaluated if you think it is substantial grounds for decreasing the amount of support you are able to pay towards the care of your child.
Additionally, if you end up paying less support because you truly don't have the means, that is not grounds for less visitation with your child. You are not "paying so that you can see your child".
Both parents should pay all they can towards adequate care of their child. Both parents should do all they can to spend quality time with their child.
There will always be a shortage of time and usually a shortage of money. Only when each parent can truly say (and feel) that they "are doing the best they possibly can toward the upbringing of their child", rather than participating in the "battle of the ex's" - that's when you have a satisifactory arrangement. Work towards that.