She demands compensation, he applies for alimony

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Q I make more than my ex. At the time of our divorce we agreed not to pay child support because I spend most of my time with our kids – he travels a lot for work and only sees them every other weekend. We haven’t agreed to any alimony either – he has a lot of assets. Over time, he’s gotten worse and worse at paying me for the kids’ uninsured medications. I have a high deductible insurance plan and two kids with anxiety and ADHD and one with diabetes so we have a lot of uninsured medical expenses.

I had to reduce my working hours because he is never there and the children have so many appointments and needs. I’m now making about 60% of what I made last year, which is still more than he did. I decided to file a contempt complaint to get him to pay the thousands of uninsured medical bills he had failed to pay over the past five years.

He filed an amendment requesting child support because I earn more than he does. Should I take my disdain back so hopefully he’ll retire his mod?

A No, you shouldn’t take back your contempt, but instead serve him by demanding his financial report so you can show the judge that he’s in a position to pay the arrears that have accumulated. They do all the hard work and pay for everything that will be clear to the judge. Also, the fact that he filed for alimony after you asked him to pay the expenses he is obligated to pay tells the judge a lot about his character.

You should move to have his alimony claim dismissed. His duty is to prove to the judge that he needs alimony. If he’s spending all of his income, check to see if he has any significant credit card debt. If not, he still has no need. If he has credit card debt that didn’t exist at the time of your divorce, now look at his lifestyle, has he gained weight? If so, you can still argue that he’s not entitled to child support now.

Finally, you can object to child benefit. Since you cannot both work your earlier hours and meet the needs of your children, your income will fall, which is a major change in circumstances.

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