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visitation - taken advantage of Kentucky

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  • visitation - taken advantage of Kentucky

    Okay, I am posting this for a girl who works for me. She has 2 kids who live with their dad in KY. Papers done in KY. Joint legal with him being primary custodial. visitation set up eow fri 5 till sun 5. My friend does all the driving. She is wondering what to do. The dad always signs the kids up for activities. That is great- she wants them to do stuff and be involved and a lot of times she has sacrificed her weekend when they had something special to do or picked them up late/brought back early/etc. Her ex just called and informed her that they are playing ball. Problem is, youngest one has games at 9am sat and oldest games are at 5pm sat. That would mean not picking them up until 6pm on sat. They are 2 hours away. She would have them less than 24 hours before putting them back in the car. The oldest one has said she doesn't want to play but dad is making her cause it's a church league and her stepmom is real religious. older one has been in counseling and it has been said she needs more time with mom, not less. She could drive up there on sat and watch game and then get girls and drive around town until the next game, but this is a small town and the only thing to do would be go to movies or eat (both of which are expensive). She hates to tell the girls they can't do something, but she is looking at 3 months of barely seeing them. I think her ex kinda dictates how things are gonna go and she doesn't argue cause she doesn't wanna rock the boat. He told her when she could have her holiday time (regardless of papers), etc.
    Her concern with rocking the boat is that they have an agreed upon CS figure different than the papers. When they split, she was working for family making double what she makes now. She gets paid right in line with her profession which is that same as when they split (her family just paid her a lot more). They never went back to modify support. Instead, 1x a year, they both sit down with their W-2's and use Ky's calculations and set it at whatever the calculations come out to be. She is never late and pays him directly- as her papers state. She always writes CS in the memo line and the month. She pays her 50% medical, never asking for a receipt- just taking their word that it was $x.xx that month. She does give a separate check for that with medical and the month in the memo.
    Any advice? I, being a bit outspoken and opinionated (LOL), offered my thoughts, but I told her I would ask you guys.

  • #2
    I suppose you probably told her that she needs to bite the bullet and file for a modification of child support. Because that's what she needs to do, or else she will be in this position forever. If they sit down with their W-2's every year, then her new court-ordered payment should be the same, and she should have nothing to worry about. It might even be less, or he could owe her back or have to give her a credit for overpayment.

    If he is ignoring the court order for visitation on holidays, she needs to file for contempt. He can't do it. It's AGAINST A COURT ORDER. She's not wrong to fight him.

    She also needs to ask for receipts for medical. It's not bad mothering... she is in her right. If she and this man were still married, and she announced one day, "I'm taking 2-grand out of savings for medical expenses, trust me, that's the amount!!" would he stand for it? Why should she?

    As far as the ball games, she could pick the kids up early Saturday morning, take the kids to the first game, then, yes, hang out until the second game. Have a picnic, complete with frosted cupcakes that Mom made just for her kids. Play at the park. Go for a walk. Load the kids up on cotton candy and ice cream. All the things you SHOULD do with your kids on Saturday. Bring some board games and a pack of cards. Tell the kids to bring their homework and they'll work on it together. Bring a mitt and a bat and ball and practice with the kids between games(she'll be at the park, after all). Play hide and seek. Load up the car with girly magazines and read them and make fun of the skinny models. Bust out the scrapbooks and photo albums and old yearbooks and sit and laugh at Mom's mullet and tightrolled jeans from when she was a kid. Make a game of it (what will Mom bring this week??). A lot of small towns have fairly interesting stories about when and why they were founded. She can look it up on the internet, then tell her kids all about the history of their town that they might not even be aware of!

    There are lots of ways to entertain your children without spending (too much) money. Also, take the time to talk to the coach about her chidren's involvement. If they don't like or want to play, she is perfectly in her rights to re-open a discussion on their participation. If they discover they like to play, maybe she can get more involved and be "snack mom" or even "water mom" for some games.

    There are endless possibilities. She just needs to get creative.

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    • #3
      Yea, I told her she needs to file to modify. Don't know if she'll do it or not. I will mention the fun things she can do with the kids while they wait for the next game. This time of year isn't great cause it's so cold there. I was trying to think of places they could go inside and sit and hang and talk. I came up with the library, but I doubt they'd want them laughing and giggling in there. That's gonna be a long 7 hours in between games.
      I told her that if she asked for the medical receipts, she might be able to write that off the medical portion of her taxes if she files medical (might be a reason to ask dad without acting like she doesn't believe him)
      I wonder, since they have been doing this CS thing their own way for like 4 years, what if he tries to say she is behind cause she didn't pay the court ordered amount?

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      • #4
        i was in sort of the same predictament....i ended up driving picking him up friday 5pm driving back to maryland on saturdays to little league games then taking him back home to philly and returning him on sundays....it was alot until i did get a modification where dad had to end up doing half of the driving....cutting into your visitation time and not following holidays as in the order is contempt....tell her to pick them up fri at 5 and return them sun 5, its her right....

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        • #5
          Originally posted by milspecgirl View Post
          I wonder, since they have been doing this CS thing their own way for like 4 years, what if he tries to say she is behind cause she didn't pay the court ordered amount?
          I'm not sure... she can prove her INCOME was different, then it seems like even if she got an adjustment, it would have to match her income. Plus he's been taking her checks for 4 years clearly marked CS in the memo... why would he wait until NOW to say she's behind. It seems obvious they had an agreement. If he's really vindictive she could be in for some problems, but I'm not sure...

          When you said the kids were playing "ball," I just assumed you meant they would be playing baseball (in the spring).

          If they are playing now, one thing they can do indoors is, like you said, head to the library. Mom can get some cheap photoalbums at Walmart and spend about 20 bucks on scrapbooking scissors, markers and scrapbook paper (they sell these really awesome packs of cardstock for, like, 7 bucks, and they have TONS of different patterns in them). They could make a date for the first few Saturdays when it is really cold to head to the library and work on a family scrapbook. It's a great way to get the kids involved in a family project. They could alternate that and Mom helping with homework one week, the movies one week for a special treat, hanging out at the park one week, then back to the library the next week. By the end of the three months, Mom will have spent a lot of quality time with her kids, and they'll have put together a great family momento. Her kids will cherish that. And so will she.

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