Camdenton, MO asked in Child Support, Divorce, Family Law and Tax Law for Missouri

Q: If the receiving parent refuses to work (legally) & doesn't file taxes, what can the paying parent do ?

My husband makes good money, but his ex wife refuses to hold down a real job. She hasn't filed her taxes either, claiming "She doesn't work". This of course throws the income levels off balance and she is fighting for more child support. One child has aged out and it is time to modify the support, but I'm afraid that because of the extremely unequal income, she will be awarded an amount that might be even more than the original. I have proof that she works, can I submit that to the court or even the IRS.

1 Lawyer Answer
Janet Sanders
Janet Sanders
  • Lees Summit, MO
  • Licensed in Missouri

A: Father may introduce proof the Mother is employed. He may also request the Court impute an income to her based upon her earning capacity. This is not the amount she earns; it is the amount she could earn if she did work. This determination takes into consideration her education, licenses, employment history, etc. Generally, the documents from the last judgment will reflect her income at that time. Father may request financial documents, such as loan applications, bank statements, etc. which may show income. The cost of the child's health insurance and the visitation schedule are also factors which effect the support amount. Father may also want to speak with a tax preparer about filing amended returns for certain years to claim the child or children. Father can report Mother's income information to the Internal Revenue Service; but unless the total amount she made exceeds the threshold limit, no consequences will result. Moreover, Father should probably not take that course of action until after the conclusion of the lawsuit.

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