How Fair Are Child Support Laws? [POLL]
I came across a story by a dear friend of mine that I find too bizarre to not share. When it comes to children of another marriage, should that be considered in child support?
With permission, I asked to share this story that I just can't comprehend. It's 100% true, but if it wasn't for the source I would never have believed it. I want to know if you have ever heard of this, or if this is something you have, or are currently, experiencing as well.
Although I have seen the actual legal documents and figures, names will obviously be changed and the math changed just for simplicity to try and follow.
John and Jane Doe were married and had three children. The Does then divorced and Jane remarried, while John has since been a single dad just trying to make ends meet. Jane moved into the home of her new husband, and then they had two children of their own. John was paying $400 a month in child support for his three children.
When the oldest child turned 19, John asked for a child support hearing to lower his child support since he was now only obligated to pay child support for his two younger children. To his surprise, he was told that since Jane had remarried and had two other children by that marriage, she could claim those two children on her financial paperwork. This lowered her income, meaning his child support would go up; double as a matter of fact.
So when he thought he would finally see lower child support payments for two kids, it went up to $800. Basically he now pays the $400 he was paying for his three children for two, plus another $400 because Jane had two kids in her current marriage.
How does this work? The man Jane married makes three times what John does, with a high paying job, a couple of business ventures on the side and the household income is way more than John's. If John is going to have his child support doubled because Jane remarried and had two other kids, why is their household income not used? How is this fair to John? I understand 100% that both parties should move on, as they have, to be happy in their new lives but why should one be penalized because he/she didn't remarry and have more children?
Keep in mind, this could go the other way. What if Jane had stayed single and John had remarried and then had two kids. Jane's child support would have been cut in half! It just seems as if John is going to have his child support doubled because of children of another marriage, that marital income should be used. The father of those children is way more than capable of taking care of his children, and John had to juggle bills every month just to survive as is, and now he pays double?
I am just baffled and curious as a newborn kitten if any of you have experienced this child support issue yourself. I know "John" will be looking for your comments, and we'd love to see you take the poll as well.
When does fair actually become fair? No one seems to have an answer, including several attorneys he has spoken with, and was only told "the state doesn't want to be responsible for the children," but in this case, the state has never been involved. They share 50/50 custody and have always been very well provided for. If the father of the "other" children was gone, I could almost understand, but he isn't.