Sunday, February 3, 2013

CAN I SEEK HALF OF CHILD CARE EXPENSES?

QUESTION: My child's father and I just received a modification of support per his request. I was not given any credit towards daycare expenses I have been paying, and the judge just mailed the new order. Can I now file and ask for 1/2 of child care to be paid directly to our provider? Our provider is my mother, who is licensed and in business in our county. She lives with me full time, and has been taking care of our child since day 1 so we can both work. Now that support has gone down due to increased weekend timeshare, I cannot afford to pay child care on my own. ================================================ MY RESPONSE: You should have brought that matter up at the last Child Support hearing. If you requested, at that hearing, that the father share in the child care expenses, and the Court denied your request, the Court likely won't allow you a second bite of the same apple. If you didn't bring that matter up at the last Child Support hearing, you could bring it up in a separate OSC, but you might not prevail for a number of reasons. A material change of circumstances has not occurred since the last OSC - the same circumstances prevail (other than the modification of custody and Child Support that resulted from that OSC). Also, the fact that your child care provider is your mother (as opposed to a 3rd party child care provider) could be a problem. However, it probably wouldn't hurt for you to file an OSC to seek an order for the father to pay 1/2 of the child care expenses (or even a proportionate share based on your respective incomes).