1. Can she just file the paperwork to take from my check from something filed in 1996?
If she has a valid court order, she can request wage withholding.
2. I don't want to get into this but I have very serious questions about her parenting. Some exapmles are 2 seperate vacations where the kids were home alone (13 & 17), an incident where I had to pick up my daughters from school beacuse they sought a counsler for their motheres drinking. The problem right now is are the kids are against me. I think it is because I care, ask questions where they are going to be, upset when they dont call on their whereabouts etc.
I have supported her through these times but now she is after me for more money and less time with my kids. Do I try for full custody? I am afraid it will make my situation with the kids worse.
When did you first start having “questions”…five years ago, three years ago, 6 months ago or when she threaten to take you to court for back CS? See where I am going; your “timing” is questionable.
As for the girls not “liking” stuff…that’s just too damn bad. Life’s a “beach” (and then you marry one). I’m sorry, but parenting is NOT a “popularity” contest and please don’t anyone take this personally…but you’re NOT supposed to be your kids’ “friend”. Oh, I know it’s not easy “competing” against someone who allows your kids to do whatever, whenever and what not, but eventually the kids grow up and they WILL appreciate the fact that the “rules” didn’t change in your home. I’ve gone through the “I hate you Mom” stage with my oldest two and my oldest daughter recently told me that as much as she sometimes hated my “rules”, she always knew where she stood.
3. She nearly makes twice as much as me in earnings. They live a different lifestyle etc. I think the kids are not learning the value of money and hard work. They get expensive clothes and make-up. Can I take her to court to stop paying her any child support?
Yes and in fact, given that she makes substantially more and your have 50/50, she would have to pay you CS. In fact, you might want to ask your attorney to mention to her attorney that ya’ll will be filing for a modification and requesting CS from her.
4. All our arrangements have been verbal since that 1996 date. Nothing is in writing with the courts. Is this going to haunt me?
Oh yeah…BUT, you might catch a break. According to what you’ve said, you 1) only didn’t pay CS during the summer (3 months) and 2) that the agreement has been ongoing for almost 10 years. Just as her attorney would question your motives for suddenly petitioning the courts for custody, your attorney should question HER motives. When I had my arrearage establishment hearing several years ago, my ex and I had four different verbal agreements and the Judge only refused to honor one of them since they were based on common sense.
IF you ONLY did not pay CS during the summer months, you MIGHT get away with it. And if you don’t, I seriously doubt the Judge is going to throw your butt in jail; he’ll just establish arrearages for those months…approximately $8,100…and you’ll have to pay it a little of it at a time over the next how many years it takes. And once the hearing is over and done with, you can file for a modification.