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Thread: Child Support

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    Wolfie's Avatar

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    Child Support

    Anyone think the child support system needs reformed?

    Particularly, the fact that courts reward child support payments based on ability to pay and not on providing for the child needs? I haven't thought too much about this but I am leaning towards making payments based on providing for a child's needs.

    Also, I thought this was screwy when I read about it a long time ago.

    Apparently, there was a court case where a man went to a party and had too much to drink and passed out. A woman noticed the man in this condition and had sex with him, and she ended up getting pregnant by the man. She then took the man to court and the judge awarded her child support payments. The judge claimed that the welfare of the child was the main concern.

    I disagreed with that. The man himself was a victim of this woman's actions. Then the court made him a victim again and the man did not do anything wrong. Why is it okay to punish that man twice for something he didn't do?

    FYI, I am currently looking for sources for the above court case but since I can not remember any of the particulars, my searching hasn't been fruitful as of yet. So take the above story with skeptism until I can find a reliable source or find out that it was nothing more than an urban legend (but feel free to argue about the principles involved in the above story).

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    luna's Avatar

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    Re: Child Support

    Do I think the child support system needs reform- most certainly. While I would love for the dollar amount to be based on the needs of the child, the reality is that you cannot get blood from a stone. If a parent cannot afford to pay more and survive, there's no money to be had. On the other hand, once the parent's income increases, the child support can appropriately be adjusted.

    Let me throw another question out, since we are on this topic. Does anyone feel that fathers in general get shafted with custody and child support? A mother is overwhelmingly more likely to be given custody of a child than a father. A mother needs to be shown to have a problem to not get custody. For a father to get custody, it seems that he needs to jump through hoops and hope that the judge agrees in his competence as a parent. Why are mothers assumed to make better parents?

    Some quotes to ponder:

    "Most states have divorce laws that state that custody should be awarded to either or both parents based on the 'best interests of the child.' Some reasons why wives are awarded custody more often are because they more often request custody of the children and also because of strong legal presumptions and traditions that favor the mother as the custodial parent, especially when the children are younger."

    (Source: "Advance Report of Final Divorce Statistics, 1989 and 1990", authored by Sally C. Clarke, Division of Vital Statistics., National Center for Health Statistics)

    "The decrees overwhelmingly favored the mother's custody wishes: 67% of mothers obtained both the legal and residential custody arrangements they desired compared with only 15% of fathers; meanwhile, only 8% of mothers (vs 37% of fathers) found neither stipulation to correspond to their preference."
    (Source: Gender Differences in Satisfaction with Divorce Decrees, Sheets & Braver, 1993)


    The following quotes are from attorneys as quoted in the Family Advocate, Winter, 1993, in the article Can Fathers be "Mothers"?

    Carol A. Chihocky of Hawthorne Florida: "In my experience, most judges look only at fitness of the mother. If they find her unfit, then they will consider fitness of the father."

    Lois Parley of New Haven Conn: "A father cannot simply show that his selection as custodian is in the child's best interest. He must make a showing that he is a better custodian than the mother [emphasis theirs]. He need not actually prove the mother unfit, but he must be able to show a 'defect'. Conversely, the mother needn't show a 'defect' in the father."

    Citation

    Discuss.

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    Re: Child Support

    Where is your interest in child support/welfare issues coming from? You seem pretty focused..

    Maybe the point of the legislation that based child support on the parent's income was to encourage parents to support their children to the best of their ability, not to cripple them financially because their relationship ended.

    Furthermore, it's not enough for an idea to be good, it must also be actionable. Who wins if a judge tells a guy who makes $8/hr to pay $300/wk in child support? It's not practical at all, and you wind up with a whole other set of problems.

    Policy has to consider the major thrust of trends, not goofy exceptions to the rule like the one you cite. Yes it sucks for the guy, but it's like getting hit by a meteor - it happens, but no-one's going to invest much time or energy in worrying about that threat. When large numbers of women start jumping drunk guys to make babies, you'll have my support, but I'll probably be drunk and broke from the vascectomy.

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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by =luna=
    Let me throw another question out, since we are on this topic. Does anyone feel that fathers in general get shafted with custody and child support? A mother is overwhelmingly more likely to be given custody of a child than a father. A mother needs to be shown to have a problem to not get custody. For a father to get custody, it seems that he needs to jump through hoops and hope that the judge agrees in his competence as a parent. Why are mothers assumed to make better parents?
    First let me generalize and say that I think both parents should be responsible for the care of their child. As always, I'm sure someone can find an exception to that rule. However, by
    and large, parents have no reason *not* to be responsible parents.

    Having said that, let me throw my own situation at you. My first wife and I decided to seperate around 1994. We have two children, who at the time were 4 and 2, both girls. I believe it was 1996 or 97 when we finally filed for divorce. We were going to go it alone, do the filing and actually get a dissolution. Upon the recommendations of the judge, she got a lawyer to handle the child issue. We really didn't have any property to discuss, so it was to be an easy dissolution. At the time, our kids were flip-flopping who they lived with, which we stopped as soon as the oldest started Kindergarten because we lived in different cities. So when we got our divorce, the youngest lived with me and the oldest lived with her. That's how it was drawn up in the divorce papers too. Each weekend the children would be together and we would get alternating weekends with the children.

    During the proceedings it was brought up that I would pay all major medical and I would pay child support. When I protested that it didn't make sense, since we both had children, I was told, by the judge, that in Ohio someone had to pay child support. Since then I have met several families that child support was refused because they didn't want it, so I doubt the validity of that. However, my oldest is now 14 this year and the youngest is 12 and I have paid child support since. They determined me at my wage and my ex-wife at $5.15 which is minimum wage here in Ohio. So I pay her the difference in her pittance she owes me and what I would owe her. Now I really don't care about the money, but it does chap my ass since my ex-wife lives off of welfare and child support. She doesn't have to work, but I'm under penalty of jail should I lose my job. I get a raise, she wants a hearing to raise my child support. It's the principle of the matter. If she can't be responsible enough to go to work and take care of my oldest, she shouldn't have custody. My youngest shouldn't do without because her mother doesn't work and needs money to buy something for our oldest daughter. Her and her boyfriend <who she gets CS from for another child> are constantly buying tickets for concerts and taking them on trips which I cannot do. So I am a little bitter about the system. However, I will have my final revenge. The case worker told me to look at it this way. In 2008, my oldest will graduate and be 18, which fulfills my obligation to CS. Then my ex-wife will have to pay CS for my youngest and she'll get hit a lot more since she won't have my oldest as a "shelter".

    I bring this up not to argue or agree with your point. I do think father's tend to get shafted because of the sterotype that mother's are.. well... maternal. I also think there are a lot of fathers that give us a bad name because they are abusive or do not pay child support. The system is not perfect and it's definitely not consistent.

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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by Fait_Maker
    First let me generalize and say that I think both parents should be responsible for the care of their child. As always, I'm sure someone can find an exception to that rule. However, by
    and large, parents have no reason *not* to be responsible parents.

    Having said that, let me throw my own situation at you. My first wife and I decided to seperate around 1994. We have two children, who at the time were 4 and 2, both girls. I believe it was 1996 or 97 when we finally filed for divorce. We were going to go it alone, do the filing and actually get a dissolution. Upon the recommendations of the judge, she got a lawyer to handle the child issue. We really didn't have any property to discuss, so it was to be an easy dissolution. At the time, our kids were flip-flopping who they lived with, which we stopped as soon as the oldest started Kindergarten because we lived in different cities. So when we got our divorce, the youngest lived with me and the oldest lived with her. That's how it was drawn up in the divorce papers too. Each weekend the children would be together and we would get alternating weekends with the children.

    During the proceedings it was brought up that I would pay all major medical and I would pay child support. When I protested that it didn't make sense, since we both had children, I was told, by the judge, that in Ohio someone had to pay child support. Since then I have met several families that child support was refused because they didn't want it, so I doubt the validity of that. However, my oldest is now 14 this year and the youngest is 12 and I have paid child support since. They determined me at my wage and my ex-wife at $5.15 which is minimum wage here in Ohio. So I pay her the difference in her pittance she owes me and what I would owe her. Now I really don't care about the money, but it does chap my ass since my ex-wife lives off of welfare and child support. She doesn't have to work, but I'm under penalty of jail should I lose my job. I get a raise, she wants a hearing to raise my child support. It's the principle of the matter. If she can't be responsible enough to go to work and take care of my oldest, she shouldn't have custody. My youngest shouldn't do without because her mother doesn't work and needs money to buy something for our oldest daughter. Her and her boyfriend <who she gets CS from for another child> are constantly buying tickets for concerts and taking them on trips which I cannot do. So I am a little bitter about the system. However, I will have my final revenge. The case worker told me to look at it this way. In 2008, my oldest will graduate and be 18, which fulfills my obligation to CS. Then my ex-wife will have to pay CS for my youngest and she'll get hit a lot more since she won't have my oldest as a "shelter".

    I bring this up not to argue or agree with your point. I do think father's tend to get shafted because of the sterotype that mother's are.. well... maternal. I also think there are a lot of fathers that give us a bad name because they are abusive or do not pay child support. The system is not perfect and it's definitely not consistent.
    Thanks for sharing.

    As a Mom, I am torn on the issue. I happily have sole custody of my son with little to no help from his father, and with no grudge about it. There was never a custody dispute of any sort. Regardless, it does seem to me that the courts favor "maternal" parenting. I often wonder what "maternal instinct" has to do with it. A fit parent isn't isolated by gender.

    *shrug*

    A topic worth exploring, I believe.

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    Re: Child Support

    I believe there is another thing to ponder in regarding preferential treatment of the mother.

    It has been discussed between me by our child's psychologist, that a mother / child relationship shares a special bond that the father really isn't able to fully comprehend or partake of no matter how much he would like it to be, and that is the fact that the mother and child where/are still connected on a far deeper level emotionally and physically. At one time they were each half of one "being", and we as men can never share that bond.

    This sort of took me by surprise, but makes some sense to me. Anyway, food for thought.
    Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter.
    Ernest Hemingway, "On the Blue Water," Esquire, April 1936

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    Re: Child Support

    well speaking second hand about someone i know i will say this... a husband totally faithful to his wife, has 2 chilldren by her, he lives oblivious to the fact that his wife has an affair with his own brother.

    the wife splits and lives with the husband, upon hearing she can get money if living alone, she moves out of the brothers house, they stay together but live seperate. the judge awards payments from the husband.

    but custody is lost to this thieving bitch who sleeps around... aswell as payments for child support.. do i think reform is needed yes, it needs to be much more equal when deciding who pays what and who gets custody etc etc... at the moment there is an assumption that a chilld is better off with the mother. that is sexual discrimination and the entire law on child benefits and custody is sexist and wrong...

    how can you justify taking a mans kids away from him because his wife has an affair with his brother, then to hurt more to make him pay to keep the couple together. ofcourse even if he gave his brother a kicking he would be done on assault.

    ****ed up

    as a final kick in the nuts she stops visits about a year later.

    and in the divorce she got half of his savings, she conviniently had no money but his brother cam into a large sum of it... sorry but there are even demonstrations over here at the moment because fathers are being shafted.... women are considered better.. which is sexist wholly.
    Last edited by DudeMan; 03-24-2004 at 10:09 PM.

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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by eternal
    The most important role model in a child's life is the same sex parent. I thought this had been common knowledge for decades. I have 3 boys and there is no way they can bond with thier mother like they can or have with me.
    Personally, I cannot see how anyone can argue which parent is the "most important". I would wager that it is common knowledge that a mother and a father contribute very different yet equally important roles for a child.

    I couldn't agree more, though- there is no way your sons can bond to you like they bond to their mother. You have a unique relationship with them, just as their mother does.

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    Re: Child Support

    Hmm...another example of this countries policies. My ex-bosses wife, left him after 25 years for someone else. Cutting a very long story short, he lost his house, pension, 2 lots of redundancy to the tune of 100k and is expected to pay to keep her in the life she is accustomed to. He is one of the best fathers I know, but the courts here need everything black and white, there is no middle ground.

    You earn how much?
    And your ex-wife is self employed and not making much money (bull$$$$)?

    Right, you can pay here extra then.

    As far as bonding goes I think there is a unique bond from both parents with their children, we are still playing catch up in the equality stakes from both sides of the gender gap.

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    Re: Child Support

    yeah alot of judges award custody to the mother with the ground reason its in the best interest of the chilld.

    but the reason why is because a woman is naturally better for the chilldren blah bah...


    daddyooo has to jump through hoops to get noticed...

    sickening really.. sexism went passsed equality and started discriminating against men... same as racism and the white guy.

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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by leejo
    Where is your interest in child support/welfare issues coming from? You seem pretty focused..
    Focused?

    More like my mind goes all over the place and doesn't focus too long on something. I read something somewhere that made me think of these things.

    Good thing I didn't bring up the Anti-Sodomy cases. Some of you guys would assume I was gay just because I brought that up for discussion

    Maybe the point of the legislation that based child support on the parent's income was to encourage parents to support their children to the best of their ability, not to cripple them financially because their relationship ended.

    Furthermore, it's not enough for an idea to be good, it must also be actionable. Who wins if a judge tells a guy who makes $8/hr to pay $300/wk in child support? It's not practical at all, and you wind up with a whole other set of problems.

    Policy has to consider the major thrust of trends, not goofy exceptions to the rule like the one you cite. Yes it sucks for the guy, but it's like getting hit by a meteor - it happens, but no-one's going to invest much time or energy in worrying about that threat. When large numbers of women start jumping drunk guys to make babies, you'll have my support, but I'll probably be drunk and broke from the vascectomy.
    The problem right now though with rewarding child support based on ability is that people right now can use "child support" to enrich their own lives, not for their child's. Say a woman successfully argues in court to receive 3000 a month for child support from a man that can easily afford it. Isn't that a bit much, especially since both the man and the woman are responsible for the kid's upbringing? And when you look at it, 3 grand is 36000 for a year...Not a bad salary for the woman and she doesn't have to do anything to earn that money.....

    Also in resonse to some other posts, isn't it sad that the courts seem to stereotype family relationships nowadays? By making the father the principle financial supporter and making it difficult for fathers to receive custody, the courts are saying that men are incapable of providing the same emotional/intellectual/nuturing support to kids that a mother can provide. It seems that courts have regulated the father to be simply a bank for the kid's upbringing.

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    Re: Child Support

    I find myself on the potentially wrong side of this issue as I have been seperated for about 3 years divorce pending on finances to make it happen. THere is no real contntion in teh divorce as far as property or custody. We have a greed to share custody and agree the main custodial parent may change from time to time. Right now they live with mom but I spend almost all my time their as caregiver/babysitter becasue I am an unemployed full time student and she works a full time job plus over time plus on call part time job. She does this because I worked and put her through her job training and schooling for her current career.

    I am constantly however reminded by here I am only in temporary reprive of child support and I know I am pretty much going to be screwed even if she doesn't try to stick it to me for some reason. I have no problem supporting my children but I also have to be able to live. Right now I consider myself homless. I stay at here place when she is working her graveyard shift with the kids and a couple days a week have to go about 40 minutes away to my parents to stay becasue I can't afford my own place. The kicker here is I am about done with school and once employed I know I will have to pay more than I can afford for my 3 boys and likely unable to have a decent place where I can afford to live. All this because after 9 years of marriage(3 years ago) my wife decided to tell me oh by the way I am a lesbian and I was just supressing it trying to be normal and now I want to end out marriage. I never decided to abandon my marriage or my children but now I am likely to be the only one to pay child support. Even If I end up with some kids living with me.


    Hope that all made snse once I was done.
    "they're more like guidelines, than actual rules,"....Captain Barbossa - Pirates of the Caribbean

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    Re: Child Support

    In the past 11 years my daughter's father has paid a mere $2800, $1700 of which was in one payment that the Government gave to me as a Federal Income Tax Withholding.

    I firmly believe that men AND women should be made to SUPPORT their children.

    Yes, there are some women out there who use men as sperm donors and then want their money and there are ALOT of men out there who really deserve to be the custodial parent but the fact remains that there are more deeadbeat parents than there should be and they are the ones that make the system unworkable.

    My daughter's father still lives in Tennessee, which is where I lived at the time, and the state of Wisconsin cannot force the state of Tennessee to go after him for support so my child gets none.

    Considering that he is only ordered to pay $50 a week and 50% of her medical expenses, I dont think that is too much. As a matter of fact it doesnt even come close to paying 1/2 of her support but I have never complained. IF he would actually pay even that much I would be grateful since I currently get nothing.

    I think that whenever paternity is established, a custodial hearing should be automatic and it should not just be a given that the mother will be the primary custodial parent unless the father fights it. It should be started as if neither parent has custody and both sides should have to prove why they are best.

    Child Support has a long long way to go in this country before it will be effective. FOr those fathers out there that pay their support and spend time with their children... BRAVO!!!!! Those are the REAL men in our sociatey.
    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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  27. #14

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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by Panz
    In the past 11 years my daughter's father has paid a mere $2800, $1700 of which was in one payment that the Government gave to me as a Federal Income Tax Withholding.

    I firmly believe that men AND women should be made to SUPPORT their children.

    Yes, there are some women out there who use men as sperm donors and then want their money and there are ALOT of men out there who really deserve to be the custodial parent but the fact remains that there are more deeadbeat parents than there should be and they are the ones that make the system unworkable.

    My daughter's father still lives in Tennessee, which is where I lived at the time, and the state of Wisconsin cannot force the state of Tennessee to go after him for support so my child gets none.

    Considering that he is only ordered to pay $50 a week and 50% of her medical expenses, I dont think that is too much. As a matter of fact it doesnt even come close to paying 1/2 of her support but I have never complained. IF he would actually pay even that much I would be grateful since I currently get nothing.

    I think that whenever paternity is established, a custodial hearing should be automatic and it should not just be a given that the mother will be the primary custodial parent unless the father fights it. It should be started as if neither parent has custody and both sides should have to prove why they are best.

    Child Support has a long long way to go in this country before it will be effective. FOr those fathers out there that pay their support and spend time with their children... BRAVO!!!!! Those are the REAL men in our sociatey.
    Hey Babe LTNC. I think the amounts you stated he was required to pay are extremely generous to him. I would have absolutly no problem paying something reasonable. I just hate it when The man has to pay so much he can only afford to live in a one room shack somewhere.

    Everybody give Panz a Big Sqeeze.................... and I dont' mean here -> (o)(o). Then tell her she needs to get her butt in the server and play some Ghost Recon.
    "they're more like guidelines, than actual rules,"....Captain Barbossa - Pirates of the Caribbean

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  29. #15
    Emanon
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    Re: Child Support

    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfie

    Apparently, there was a court case where a man went to a party and had too much to drink and passed out. A woman noticed the man in this condition and had sex with him, and she ended up getting pregnant by the man.
    This almost happend to me, THANK GOD I was so drunk I couldnt feel a thing and therefore.............you know.

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