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-   -   Threatening court over $48?!? (http://www.ottawadivorce.com/forum/f5/threatening-court-over-48-a-18078/)

scarycheri 09-22-2014 10:07 AM

Threatening court over $48?!?
 
Hi all,

Here's some background info. I need some advice/opinions

So Feb 2013 a new court order was issued during a case conference. Following was decided:

$2100 per yr for after school care ( child was 10)
$1440 per yr for tutoring
$250 per yr for girl guides

Total $3790

Total amounted to $316 per month. Proportionate share amounted to 50%
Each parent paid $158

*there were many more receipts that the judge rejected such as swimming lessons, girl guide camp fees, sleeping bag, etc

At the end of each year custodial parent would provide receipts to paying parent as proof. If custodial parent exceed the allotted amount she would be responsible for the increase, in the event she spent less paying parent could ask for decrease to monthly payment to reflect this.

Of course exchanging of NOA was expected July 1st of each year commencing July 2013

So July 2013 arrives, paying parent sent NOA to custodial parent and requested same. Also requested a receipt for child care for 2012. Was ignored regarding the receipt. Was told NOA was in mail. When it didn't arrive she said she would give it in person. Didn't happen. Then said would send by courier. Never happened. Payor requested a scanned copy by email and was ignored.

January 2014 custodial parent sent receipts for the following:

Karate $1245 (7 months)
Sewing class $350
Spring camp $305
Tutor $1350
Babysitting $1050 (after school and summer)
Swimming $313
Smmr Camp $646

Totaling $5262

Custodial parent is expecting payor to agree to increase. The paragraph in the court order doesn't include the details as mentioned above. Simply states the payor is to remit $158 per month for s.7. No mention of reassessment or increase however does indicate receipts must be remitted to payor yearly.

Payor petitioned court clerks office for transcripts to confirm what exactly was agreed to and let the custodial parent know the details.

Payor sent NOA 2013 to custodial parent in June 2013. There is an increase to child support required.

July 2014 custodial parent sent a letter including 2013 NOA and a demand that the payor increase his s.7 contribution and child support. She removed the receipts for swimming after remembering the judge didn't allow for swimming to be included as a s.7 expense. Along with the letter is a motion to change on consent. She demanded he sign the motion or be taken to court. She also states if he doesn't agree she doesn't want a response. (um ok?)

Sept 2014 custodial parent sent an email as a "gentle" reminder about the increase. She let him know that she intends to seek help from the court if he doesn't cooperate. She gave him 10 days to respond. She urges him to live up to his financial responsibilities. :/

Payor responded and agreed to the increase to child support but not the s.7 expenses. He scanned the pages from the transcript detailing what she agreed to and attached it to the email response.


So both parents make approx $100k per year.

The increase to s.7 she is demanding works out to an additional $48 per month

The increase to child support amounts to $39 per month

Although the payor wouldn't be broke paying the increase he feels that it's the principle of the issue.

The reason a flat amount was agreed to in court was because the payor was afraid the custodial parent would do exactly this.....spend more money and expect him to contribute without his consent. He feels if he gives in now he is setting a precidence for the future.

Some other issues he has

-receipt for child care is only for July to Dec 2013. Where is receipt for child care from sept 2012-june 2013?

-receipt for child care was authored by custodial parents best friend who works full-time at the school board as per affidavit submitted to court. Leads him to wonder if she was even in care

-summer/march break camp----there was no mention of camp being part of section 7 during case conference

-extra curricular was $250 for the year and is now 6X higher.

-receipt submitted for 2013 tutoring was from 2012 with notes in custodial parents handwriting indicating any changes to tutoring.

If she pursues court the payor intends to request the following:

child care to cease as child is in grade 7

extra curricular be limited to $1200 per year, his share being half

receipts for s.7 must be provided to payor within 30 days of the date on the receipt. Payor has 30 day from date he receives receipts to remit his share

provide dates tutoring was attended on a monthly basis with the option to contact the tutor to confirm and remit payment directly to custodial parent within 30 days

all payments for s.7 made directly to custodial parent via email money transfer

Currently all payments are being made via FRO at the request of the payor as the custodial parent was holding cheques for 3 and 4 months and cashing them at once.

What do you all think?

Serene 09-22-2014 04:46 PM

I think you have a mess.

You can dictate how payments are made and any time the recipient can revert to collecting through FRO. Therefore, this is not an issue/debate you should pursue (time well wasted in my opinion).

You don't know if child was even in care Does the payor not have contact with child?

Why email transfer? And why dictate and limit yourself to this? Pay as you wish. Just ensure its paid on time. Don't fight over the silly stuff.

I doubt you will be successful in limiting to $1200 a year. You have to support your quest and it's child's best interests and pattern of spending/activities enjoyed by child versus your budget request.

Tutor - if you request itemized list of dates, etc. Then what? If anything challenge the need versus as for a detailed bill....we're there free resources available but not pursued? Did payor even know this was talking place? Does the child have an IEP? Who and what warranted the need for a tutor? Did her marks in the subject improve?

rockscan 09-22-2014 05:39 PM

Another question is: is there an item in the agreement on s7 being agreed to by payer? If yes and payor agreed, then these arent surprises. In my opinion, if you know its going to be difficult to agree to costs, there should be an agreement on what child gets registered in yes?

scarycheri 09-22-2014 05:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Serene (Post 181379)
I think you have a mess.

You can dictate how payments are made and any time the recipient can revert to collecting through FRO. Therefore, this is not an issue/debate you should pursue (time well wasted in my opinion).

You don't know if child was even in care Does the payor not have contact with child?

Why email transfer? And why dictate and limit yourself to this? Pay as you wish. Just ensure its paid on time. Don't fight over the silly stuff.

I doubt you will be successful in limiting to $1200 a year. You have to support your quest and it's child's best interests and pattern of spending/activities enjoyed by child versus your budget request.

Tutor - if you request itemized list of dates, etc. Then what? If anything challenge the need versus as for a detailed bill....we're there free resources available but not pursued? Did payor even know this was talking place? Does the child have an IEP? Who and what warranted the need for a tutor? Did her marks in the subject improve?

1. The recipient doesn't want to be in FRO. She asks regularly for payor to agree to drop out. He would intend on adding a clause saying she can revert to FRO if he doesn't pay within 30 days.

2. Yes he sees her but he doesn't drill her about these things. He chooses not to involve the child. Also, it's not unusual for the child to visit the supposed "babysitters house" as the child is besties with their child. Asking her if she went to Jane's house after school would be pointless since prior to July 2013 she would hang out there anyway. She wouldn't know if mommy is paying Jane's mom suddenly. Anyways, isn't 12 a little old for a babysitter? Also, Mom's boyfriend works shifts and is often home after school.

3. With her everything has to be specific. If it isn't she picks a fight. That's why we are having this issue now.

4. Pattern of spending has been between $250 and $600 per year for the past 8 years. It's decreased as she as gotten older.At no time did the recipient contact the payor to let him know their child was interested in a costly activity. My ex was able to put a limit on my extra curriculars. My daughter was entering cheer which was $2000 a year and my previous spending was $675. The judge when with the previous history. Also....do you think a judge is going to let the recipient go back on what she agreed to?

5. Tutor....recipient pays tutor cash under the table. The tutor won't provide a receipt however did provide a letter confirming attendance and frequency in 2012. Judge ruled the letter serves as a receipt. A letter from 2012 doesn't confirm attendance in 2013 or any years in the future. The child has an LD and has an IEP in all subjects school. Her grades have not improved. With IEP she is still a C/D student at best. Child has been with tutor for 5 years, since being tested. Prior to testing she was an R student. Recipient associates new grades with tutor not IEP.

Previous to Feb 2013 recipient didn't want financial assistance from payor for s.7. She didn't want him to see her NOA and find out how much she made. She only pursued s.7 after payor asked for more time with child.

She emailed him this morning about his response and claims he's not living up to his responsibility. $950 a month sounds like a deadbeat dad? It didn't include any threat of court this time so who knows. We figured out that if they just leave his payment as is he is covering his share of a full year for karate, tutoring and a few weeks of summer camp. That's fair. He isn't looking to lower it. He's just not agreeing to increase his payment when she knowingly over spent.

scarycheri 09-22-2014 06:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rockscan (Post 181385)
Another question is: is there an item in the agreement on s7 being agreed to by payer? If yes and payor agreed, then these arent surprises. In my opinion, if you know its going to be difficult to agree to costs, there should be an agreement on what child gets registered in yes?


All the order states is that the payer is to remit $158 per month for s.7 expenses. They talked about being specific, as we are suggesting now, but the payer was trying to be agreeable and cooperative. The transcripts show that the payer had concerns about the recipient being able to have free rein in regards to the costs for activities. The judge indicated that although the recipient would have the choice as to what the child participated, she would not be able to exceed $316 per month of which half or $158 per month would be the payers share. The recipient agreed to take responsibility for any costs exceeding this amount. This is all in the transcripts mind you. The judge didn't include these details in the order.

stripes 09-22-2014 06:16 PM

The payor (Parent A) should increase his CS payments accordingly now that both parties have the NOAs. (BTW the other parent (Parent B) is not "demanding" anything here, this is a completely reasonable expectation. Parent A is not conceding anything by paying what he is legally required to pay).

As for the S7 expenses: I am going to assume that Parent A has been paying his $158 per month promptly for the entire year, so that what is at issue is the residual amount of S7 which exceed $158 x 12. (If Parent A has not been paying promptly, then he's created this mess by not abiding by the court order, giving license to Parent B to do the same)

Parent A has a choice, he can either

a) pay 50% of the residual amount based on receipts submitted by Parent B. The residual amount here is not ridiculous if both parents are earning in the six figures. It's also not unreasonable for costs to go up as child gets older (no more day care, but other activities cost more). Tell Parent A that in future expenses need to be cleared before they are incurred, not on presentation of receipts. Save energy for more important battles.

b) not pay any of the residual amount. Engage in pointless back-and-forth with Parent B, which may or may not result in court costs which far exceed the amount being haggled over.

These parents have a bad court order, which is the source of the problem. A statement that A will pay B $158 per month now and forever isn't going to work out in the long run. Clearly A thinks he is doing everything necessary by paying $158 (following the letter of the agreement); clearly B thinks the situation has changed and $158 no longer represents A's half of the expenses (following the spirit of the agreement). I can see how each parent believes they are right, and the fault lies with whoever drew up the court order.

If I were Parent A, I would respond to Parent B's letter with a proposed agreement that in exchange for A paying B the residual amount for 2013, going forward Parent A will approve Parent B's expenditures before they are incurred, and that expenses will be reconciled once (or twice) a year. That's all you really need to avoid this mess.

scarycheri 09-22-2014 06:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stripes (Post 181391)
The payor (Parent A) should increase his CS payments accordingly now that both parties have the NOAs. (BTW the other parent (Parent B) is not "demanding" anything here, this is a completely reasonable expectation. Parent A is not conceding anything by paying what he is legally required to pay).

As for the S7 expenses: I am going to assume that Parent A has been paying his $158 per month promptly for the entire year, so that what is at issue is the residual amount of S7 which exceed $158 x 12. (If Parent A has not been paying promptly, then he's created this mess by not abiding by the court order, giving license to Parent B to do the same)

Parent A has a choice, he can either

a) pay 50% of the residual amount based on receipts submitted by Parent B. The residual amount here is not ridiculous if both parents are earning in the six figures. It's also not unreasonable for costs to go up as child gets older (no more day care, but other activities cost more). Tell Parent A that in future expenses need to be cleared before they are incurred, not on presentation of receipts. Save energy for more important battles.

b) not pay any of the residual amount. Engage in pointless back-and-forth with Parent B, which may or may not result in court costs which far exceed the amount being haggled over.

These parents have a bad court order, which is the source of the problem. A statement that A will pay B $158 per month now and forever isn't going to work out in the long run. Clearly A thinks he is doing everything necessary by paying $158 (following the letter of the agreement); clearly B thinks the situation has changed and $158 no longer represents A's half of the expenses (following the spirit of the agreement). I can see how each parent believes they are right, and the fault lies with whoever drew up the court order.

If I were Parent A, I would respond to Parent B's letter with a proposed agreement that in exchange for A paying B the residual amount for 2013, going forward Parent A will approve Parent B's expenditures before they are incurred, and that expenses will be reconciled once (or twice) a year. That's all you really need to avoid this mess.

The increase in CS was never up for debate. Parent A has always been forth coming with his NOA and offered an increase when applicable. Last year Parent B turned it down. This year she wants it.

Parent A has told Parent B he will sign a motion to change on consent without question for the purpose of CS. Didn't mean to imply the CS increase was a demand. It's the s.7 increase that came off as one.

Parent A is and always has been in complete compliance with his CS and S.7 payments. He has never been late, in arrears, etc. He knows it's his child's right to receive support. As of June 1, 2014 there has been an excess of funds in the FRO account as he has been remitting the increase to CS while waiting for the new order. FYI...Parent A registered for FRO to simplify his payments. Parent B insisted on PDC's and would cash 3 or 4 months at a time.

Parent A has requested Parent B to discuss changes to s.7 activities and she ignores his request. Previously it wasn't for the purpose of costs as she didn't want his contribution prior to Feb 2013. Parent B often enrolls child in activities that conflict with Parent A's access and expects him to take her to them. She been doing it for years. He doesn't have a problem taking the child to activities even though he doesn't live local to the child however being told as you pick up the child that she is committed to a party, swimming lesson, etc and Parent A has already made plans for him and the child is disrespectful to say the least. When he tries to communicate with her about these things she involves the police claiming harassment and threats. She has never been successful and laying charges and the officers are sympathetic with Parent A. The only way they can get along is if Parent A agrees to everything Parent B wants. When they attended court ordered mediation she said no to everything, even when he was agreeing to what she wanted. Communication is limited and strained to say the least.

The court order only adds to the tension. Parent b follows the order when convenient for her. Example. Previous order stated parent a was to have Father's Day access. For 6 yrs the child has dance recital that day. He asked to have her after recital. Told no. Asked for an alternate day. Told no. Parent b said if he wanted to see her he would have to spend the day with her and the child. He removed fathers day from his access in feb 2013 because she wouldn't agree to any changes. 2013 and 2014 she emails him the day before to ask if when he's picking up child for Father's Day. He reminds her that she took that out of the order and she berates him. A lot of games being played

MS Mom 09-22-2014 07:18 PM

Two $100G/a parents and the argument is over less than $50??

That's .025% of the total parental income.....

stripes 09-22-2014 09:14 PM

There seem to be a lot of different issues being conflated here (Father's Day, tutoring, FRO, etc). It's not clear if the OP wants advice on a particular situation or whether this is general venting about dealing with her husband's (?) former wife. Does the OP have a specific question?

Given all the issues, it sounds like the OP's husband can either go on as he has been doing with a weak, nonspecific court order which maximizes conflict between the parents, or seek a clearer, more detailed order which reduces the need for contact between the parents, going back to court if necessary. Either way, he is going to get headaches from his ex. His only real choice is which flavour of headaches he prefers.

scarycheri 09-22-2014 10:22 PM

I agree! I don't think $50 should be an issue. The fear the payer has is with the recipient honouring her word not to increase. It's $50 this time next time could be $200.

I only mentioned the access because respecting the court order was mentioned. Was trying to give an example of the past. Access is no longer an issue as the payer has given into the recipients demands in order to spare the child any hardship.

I do appreciate the advice and will pass it on to the payer. My comments and answers to questions are merely to further debate the issues. The more opinions and info the better informed in making a decision.

There will be no court action on the payers part however. He is happy to leave things status quo as per s7 and increase the cs as required

Like most people when someone threatens court he feels uneasy about the idea and doesn't want the fight. He went down this road not too long ago to try to gain more access and didn't like the emotional toll it took in him or his child.

I apologize if I veared off subject. Wasn't trying to vent, just provide as much info as possible to gain informed feedback.

This is a mess indeed and a headache for the payer. Unfortunately he's been drafted in a player in a game he dleant want to play and there's no real instructions. His experience has been that no matter what he does he loses either way. He's tried being submissive and giving in to keep the peace. It resulted in being taken advantage of and much disappointment.

This poorly worded court order replaced an even worse outdated order. This new order came about after the payer attempted to gain more time with his child. The recipient answered to the tune if $17k of supposed arrears of which she got nothing because none of it was valid.

Court, threats and even lawyers are daunting. He just wants to support his child and spend time with her without the all the complications while maintaining some mutual respect. Hopefully with all these opinions avf advice he gained here he will be one step closer.


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