Q: Under FAM 024(b) section 304 Orders for child care costs - do I have to pay half even if I am not needing child care?
My ex husband needs child care for his weeks when he has our son however I do not need childcare for the weeks when I have our son (we have 50/50), I continued paying it for the remainder of this school year however I no longer wish to pay for something I do not use. am I legally responsible to pay for childcare regardless of my circumstances?
A: First, start with what the current court order says. If there is no court order, then there is no legal duty for someone in your shoes to pay 50%; however, if there is a court order, then there is a legal duty to pay 50%--it cannot be changed unless there is a new court order to replace the terms. If in fact there is a court order, then there is one of two ways to resolve the problem: 1) "Stipulate" between the two of you that you don't have to pay 50% of the child-care and then submit the stipulation to the judge for final approval; or 2) if you can't reach an agreement, file a petition with the court on this particular issue and ask the court to make the change. (Whether you will win or lose on this issue will depend on your particular set of facts).
I strongly recommend you speak with an attorney, even if for a consultation or legal coaching, because there are other collateral issues you need to consider before "opening the pandora's box." For example, if you are also paying child support, he could use this opportunity for the court to revisit the issue of child support as well. In other words, understand the pros and cons of raising this issue before you take a step to which you will not be able to stop.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.