We live in Ohio and my husband owes back child support. The magistrate says that they can include my income in the calculations to determine how much he pays a month now. Why should my income be included? It's not my debt and they are not my kids.
Melinda from Cleveland, OH
I would say that is how the law in Ohio has been written. It most likely is true in many other states. Here is an example of a law in Maine. A married man who lives in New Hampshire, but works in Maine has to pay state taxes to Maine. If his wife works in New Hampshire her income has to be included in his income for Maine taxes. Doesn't seem fair, but folks in this catch 22 have taken the case to court and lost every time. You could investigate the law with an attorney, but I wouldn't spend to much money on the attorney. (01/29/2009)
I'm guessing that they have to include your income, because it affects how much your husband can pay out. If he wasn't married and had to live on one income, he'd have less money to give to his kids. Because he's married to you, he's living off two incomes and therefore will have more money available to support his children.
I also worry when you say things like "it's not my debt" because in many places when you marry someone, their debt becomes your debt. Not sure if this is true where you live or if it applies to child support, but now that you are married you may want to look into just how separate your finances really are. (01/30/2009)
I hate to say this, but the CSEA takes all household income into account when calculating his obligation to his children. Regardless of whether he pays or not, or whether the childrens' custodial parent is responsible with the CSEA check, he still rightfully owes it. The CSEA can garnish your tax returns if he's behind. You'll have to file an Injured Spouse Claim Form (I think it's #2754) as long as he's in arrears.
No, it isn't fair, and a lot of guys I know (my own father included, when I was a child) manage to bypass this. The child support law is one of several reasons my middle son is appealing to our county for custody of his son. Our oldest just prefers to make his new love help him survive while half his paycheck gets split between the mothers of his first two children.
I'm sorry you ended up with a jerk who wasn't up-front with you. Hope things work out for you. (01/30/2009)
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