Do parents who pay child support have any legal rights when it comes to the best interest of the child? 22 Answers as of February 18, 2013

EX: Best interest of child is determined by whom? Who says that the money being paid is in the interest of the child - who determines that? Does the individual paying have any say in how the money is spent?

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Peters Law, PLLC
Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
You have two separate questions. The judge decides what is in the best interest of the child when it comes to custody. The child support is presumed to be spent on the child. How can you say that rent, food, clothes do not come from the child support. Unless the parent is gambling the money away or using it to buy drugs, you don't have any say in how it is spent. If those things are happening, then you should go to court and ask for custody to be given to you since it will be in the best interest of the child.
Answer Applies to: Idaho
Replied: 2/18/2013
Bruning & Associates, PC
Bruning & Associates, PC | Kevin Bruning
The best interests of the child are usually considered when determining which parent obtains custody. There are legal steps to be taken if you believe that child support is not being used for the benefit of the child.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 2/18/2013
Ankerholz and Smith
Ankerholz and Smith | Rian F. Ankerholz
When parents work together, they determine the best interests of their own children. When parents cannot work together, the court may have to determine the best interests of the children. Absent extraordinary circumstances, the non-custodial parent has no right to micro-manage custodial parent spending of child support. Consult an experience family law attorney.
Answer Applies to: Kansas
Replied: 2/17/2013
Fran Brochstein
Fran Brochstein | Fran Brochstein
The short answer to your question is no. A judge once told me in Harris County, Texas that the child support goes toward housing, utilities, gasoline in a vehicle & food for the child. If the child has a roof over his/her head, is eating, being driven in a vehicle & is wearing clothes then the judge will presume that the c. s. is being used for the benefit of the child. You cannot ask for receipts as proof to where your child support is going.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 2/17/2013
Carey and Leisure | John Smitten
Generally once the money goes to the recipient that's it. If she/he is misusing the money then you can file a motion to require an accounting each month however these motions are rarely if ever granted.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 2/17/2013
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    The child support paid is for the general support and maintenance of the child's environment. Each child support dollar is not required to be spent on specific child expenses.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Gregory T. Buckley, Attorney at Law
    Gregory T. Buckley, Attorney at Law | Gregory T. Buckley
    Generally, the person paying child support has no right to determine how that money is spent.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Henry Lebensbaum | Henry Lebensbaum
    Incomplete question
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    John Russo | John Russo
    The best interest of the child is a standard that is determined by the court based upon all of the best evidence before it. But whats your question? You want to be able to tell the other parent what to do with the money you pay towards the support of the child at the other parents household, that makes a lot sense, and where does that end, what are the perimeters set for you, or the other parents who pay? I read these questions sometimes with amazement, first of all if you fully understood the theory of child support then you would know that both parents are obligated for their portion of the guideline support amount. Child support is based upon the combined joint gross income of both the parties, she lies, or he lies, well fine nothing is full proof. But in any event if your combined joint income calls for a monthly support number of lets say 1,200. and you earn 60% of the income you pay 720 per month or 167.44 per week thats 4.3 if you are trying to figure it. What do you think happen to the 480 that is the other parents responsibility in theory that parent must make it up to support the child, now logic would dictate that the parent with placement would receive the payment or do you believe that is not in the best interest of the child also. The money is based upon federal minimum poverty levels, the minimum that the government feels is needed for a child to subsist, THE MINIMUM!!! Now does the child have cloths? Does the child eat at the other parents home? Is the rent paid at the other parents home? Are the lights on? Is the heat on? Does the child have a bed to sleep in and a room? If the child is in school does the child have a lunch? this can go on and on, so not knowing your exact weekly amount or monthly support amount. So explain this of the 720 figure used here how do you distinguish between that money, and the money that the other parent puts in lets say the bank to pay all those bills to help keep, a roof over the child's head, food in their stomach, a warm house to be in, and cloths on their back, etc, etc, how do you determine what goes to what, you can't, and that is why the courts have determined that this although not perfect, is the best way to determine that the child's best interest is being provided for, and why your position which I have heard a thousand times before is meritless. Again not knowing what your basic child support obligation is I will say this, that on the average the majority of non custodial parents pay around 130 per week for one child, that is around $6,800.00 per year and if you really believe that is sufficient a sum to raise a child, all I can say is that you are sadly mistaken, my dog cost close to that last year.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Thompson Law Firm, PLLC
    Thompson Law Firm, PLLC | William Matthew Thompson
    Both parents have a "say" in determining what is best for the child. The payor only has say in how child support is spent if you can prove its being misused, otherwise no.
    Answer Applies to: Mississippi
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    The Law office of Karla M Mansur
    The Law office of Karla M Mansur | Karla Mansur
    The judge decides. You do not have the ability to control how child support is spent.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr.
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr. | John F. Geraghty, Jr.
    the answer is the Judge
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Richard D. Zasada, LLC | Richard D. Zasada
    First of all, whether or not you pay child support has no bearing on the issue of "best interest of the child". That term is used as the standard the court uses to determine what to do when issues are presented to the court. The Parent's need to do what is best for the children at all times. Decisions concerning the children should be made jointly but in order to get that right a parent must first Petition the Court for a reasonable parenting plan. You need to consult with a family law attorney?so they may discuss this issues with you.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    LAW OFFICE OF ANNE B. HOWARD | Anne B. Howard
    You can use child support as trash if you want and no one can stop you. Best interest goes to child custody not support.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Hamblin Law Office | Sally Hamblin
    You have no say how money is spent. Any relevant issues you are concerned about or want changed, you file a motion with the court. The judge has the say.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Rebecca Rainwater
    Rebecca Rainwater | Rebecca Rainwater
    The money is to be used to support the child. This includes, living expenses, rent, food, utilities, clothes, medicine, etc. Rarely is the amount paid ever cover the entire cost of raising a child by one parent compared to two parents supporting a child together in one home. The parent receiving the support determines how to use it. Unless you can show a court that the child's needs are not being met because the money is used for some other reason, which requires admissible evidence to prove, then there isn't much you can do.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
    Best interest of child is determined by a judge if the parents can't agree. Judge's & legal system operate on the presumption that the parent receiving child support is providing for the child's needs and there is no requirement that every penny of child support be traceable directly to the child's benefit. Unless the paying parent has clear and unequivocal evidence that the receiving parent is not providing for the child's needs, the court will not require detailed accountability.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    Best interest is determined by the court if the parents cannot agree.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    The Law Offices of Tres A. Porter | Tres A. Porter
    no, You have little to no say in how the money is spent. If there is a concern that the child is not being properly cared for you should consult a family law attorney in your area immediately, but as far as just "having a say" as to how the other party is spending the money, you are unlikely to get anywhere with that issue.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Petit & Dommershausen SC
    Petit & Dommershausen SC | Tajara Dommershausen
    No, the parent who pays has no say in how the money is spent. I'd you think the child is being neglected, file a motion to modify placement/ custody.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 2/17/2013
    Donaldson Stewart, PC
    Donaldson Stewart, PC | Monica H. Donaldson Stewart
    Payment of child support is not according to the "best interests" standard. It is paid according to a statutory formula, and the paying parent has no say in how the receiving parent applies those funds in his/her household.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 2/17/2013
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