Question about SD moving with mother out of state

janemarie5February 8, 2009

SD lives with us, she may move with her mother down south. She is currently a sophmore in High School. SD will go if she moves during the summer but does not want to change in the middle of school.. I posted a longer post about this last month. Biomom currently lives 20 minutes away in the same state as us, we have custody of girls although only 1 is considered a minor at this point.

My questions are: If BioMom quits job here to go down there and takes lesser paying job/attends school, what is our financial responsibility meaning, let's say she makes $500-$600 week now but makes $300 down there, are we responsible to pay more because she makes less?

I do not think it would be fair to make us pay a higher percentage of child support because she takes cut in pay/attends school all because she wants to move. Don't get me wrong, paying child support is not a problem for me, what is, is her continual claim that she is going to school, can only work part time and we have always been the main provider. And I know she won't make as much when she moves. I would hope that the judge would base child support on what she is capable of making, not what she claims she will make when she moves.

2nd question: What if we decide to fight it? What if 16 year old wants to go but we think it's not in her best interest as it's an unnecessary move? Will a judge care what we think if 16 year wants to go? It's not that mother is unfit, we just worry how she will transition, and the move is not necessary, we continue to be the main providers financially. Biomom pays child support, often times she gets behind but at the moment she is up to date.

But her goal is to finish her program and work part time, and her DH will have to find work.. it's all incredibly risky.

Just to update everyone, BioMom has gotten into the Community college she wanted to complete a program she has started up here, it will take her a year to complete down there. She has to be down there by August to start. They have dropped the price of their house 2 times. Once in Jan and again last week. And the rumor is she will go in the summer regardless of house selling and wait for her husband to sell house up here. Sounds incredibly risky in these times, but whatever... It's not my problem UNLESS my SD goes. If their house sells and they have a home, school district and are settled in, I can't really take issue, but if they are in limbo, we will not let her go without a fight. My older SD is waiting to hear from the colleges she applied to and wants to attend in that state regardless. She is unhappy at her current college and is going.

I will update everyone as things progress. thanks for any input.

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From reading your post I really don't see the problem. The mom is working towards an education so she sounds responsible. How does SD's father feel about this? Is your husband giving up custody? I do know you almost have to let a teenager move in with the other parent if they feel strongly about it.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 10:48AM
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A 16 year old doesn't necessarily know what they want or what's in their best interests. There is little reasoning with them and that is why it's pointless to fight what a teenager thinks they want because it will usually cause rebellion. Most high school kids don't want to leave their friends unless they are having problems that they want to get away from. Has she given her reasons for wanting to move?

Has mom paid dad any support? The court could consider using what she is capable of making if the move is unnecessary or if she is moving because her husband is going to make more money and there is no good reason for her to quit working or drop her income. Yes, pursuing an education might sound responsible, but your kids are supposed to come first. I planned on going back to school when my kids were grown. My youngest turned 18 but now we have full time custody of SD9 and while I'm in a custodial role, I am putting off school again because my income is necessary (for school) and so is my time. OP's SD is 16 and mom can put off finishing her program until the girl is 18 if she needs to but using school is the oldest excuse for women (and men) that don't want to work. Does mom have any other children living with her?

It's also very possible that your SD will get down to where mom is moving and hate it. She may want to come home or she may want to bounce back and forth.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 11:37AM
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The laws regarding this vary from state to state, and also in accordance to the provisions in the divorce decree, so it is hard, if not impossible, to say based on the information you've provided.

However, if BM acquires sole physical custody, her income is usually not a factor in the determination of child support your husband will be required to pay, but rather his.

In my state (Illinois) for example, for 1 child the noncustodial parent pays 20% of their NET income, for 2 children, it's 25%, and for 3 or more a flat 30%. The custodial parent's income doesn't factor into this.

If your husband retains JOINT custody however, then both parents' income may be a factor, however the judge may elect to imput additional income to a parent who elects to work part time or remain underemployed.

If she is the one who elected to move, you may also be able to petition for her to be responsible for at least part, if not all of the travel expense for visitation. I don't know however whether this would be worth going to court to obtain.

Child support is usually determined by a set formula in accordance with state law and calculators for all states are available on-line. To check yours, you can just "google" the name of your state and "child support calculator.

Best of luck!

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 11:46AM
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My DH would be giving up custody. And we understand that we will have to let her go if SD feels strongly about it.
But Biomom has been working towards an education for 5 years and seems to get no where. There is no family down there nor jobs, we really aren't sure why the move, but just because we don't understand it, doesn't mean it's a bad idea. But since there is no immediate need to go, she can get the same education here, she has no job, I have reservations of course... But I am just thinking out loud. I hate to have a 16 year old uproot her life when she could finish HS here and go to college in the new state. And the Biomom could get started on her own life and not drag a high schooler along... and if it all works out SD can move in 2 years.

But, to be honest, if everything falls into place for them, house sells, finds job etc.. we will not fight the issue, just concerned.

I just do not want to support HER and my SD, that has always been the case, when she had custody, she always cried poverty, barely worked and my DH was the main provider, they moved in here 5 years ago and she barely worked, took 1 class at a time, worked as little as possible and has always managed to be the 20% provider to our 80%. It will upset me to pay her support and she uses it to support herself once again. Why should we pay her more because she wants to change her life and she leaves a good paying job now?

I guess I am just venting alittle.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 11:47AM
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Yes, the mom has paid support, not on time or in full most times but after they attached last years income tax, we are now up to date. It is a small amount, we pay for health insurance. She is responsible for very little.

We had custody of the 3 children, 1 is moved out on her own, she is in her 20's, the other is going to college here but will transfer to the new state. So, the last one is the youngest minor.

SD has not said alot about the move, it has been a well kept secret. She did say that she wants to experience life and see different places. SD is very well adjusted, well liked at school and a top honor student. But she is close to her mom and I would imagine that she feels very very torn about this. I would like DH to talk to her when it actually becomes a reality and tell her that 2 years will fly by and she can apply to colleges there.

this may sound petty, but I hope their house doesn't sell before the fall so SD will not have to make a decision. She has made it very clear to us that if this does not happen in the next 5 months and the move happens during the summer, she will not move if she starts her junior year, she will finish her jr and sr year here. That would pretty much solve this whole mess.

Bio's DH will not make more money, he will be closing the doors to his business and I guess find a job/business to go to. Bio mom will work 20 hrs a week I assume and attend this program. She has attended 3 schools in 5 years and has not gotten very far, she flunks many of her classes so I have no hopes that she will actually complete this process.

I don't know, I am a rambling kind of mood today. I think this is a selfish decision to make at this point. This education could be attained here and she could wait until her youngest is 18 and go where ever she pleases, she is causing a tremendous amount of unhevel and there is no home, job, family she is going to... just the acceptance into a community college? Who does that? And don't drag your kids along, wait until you are settled yourself. Who is going to support them and my SD? Our child support? Beginning to look that way.

We will subpeona her payroll records if this actually happens and our arguement will be that she is leaving a good paying job, so we should not have to pay more because of that.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 12:08PM
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I'm with Ima on the futility of arguing with a 16-year old about something like this. But what you can do is insist that she really think about the situation critically before making an important decision like this.

What I do with my kids is, first, the little speech about how every big decision has consequences and that some will always be good and some will always be bad, and that good decision-making requires up to try to predict the consequences in advance. Then I require them to make a list of at least three major advantages and three major disadvantages of the planned course of action. When they balked, I simply told them that if they aren't mature enough to really think the issue through, then they certainly aren't mature enough to make the decision. If they listed only one side or really skewed their responses (important advantages, trivial disadvantages) -- I told them that they were not being honest or fair, and that if lying about it and manipulating the evidence was the only way to make their decision look good, then that should tell them something...

It generally works pretty well --

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 12:19PM
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"acceptance" to community college? lol community colleges take anyone, you pretty much have to have two legs and two arms, don't even need a brain to be accepted. Not good enough reason to move anywhere. 5 years? She has no kids at home and cannot finish education in 5 years? I got Masters(52 credits) in 2 and 1/2 years working full time and having a kid at home. What is she, stupid? Just hope SD does not take after her.

saying that... if that's what SD wants maybe that's what she should try. In my opinion some 16-year-olds are too immature to know what's the best for them. And too often teenagers make choices because of the wrong reasons.

If she refuses to work or works too little, maybe that could be addressed in a custody battle. If she does not make enough money (because she does not want to), how could she have kids at home?

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 12:32PM
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