Child care


My son’s mother was granted primary custody 3 years ago. In the custody order, she is responsible for child care. Over the past three years she has never scheduled the care and argued that she should have to pay for it. Now that her new husband has lost his job, she has told me that she (her husband) is doing as required by offering child care at her home durring my summer weeks. This is a significant distance for me to drive both before and after work each day and requires both my son and I to start our day much earlier than usual. I had scheduled him for an all day camp by my residence to which she is not agreeable and has stated that if I choose to take him there I must pay for it. I have noted that if she would meet me half the distance to her house that I am agreeable to care in her home. She refuses to meet me and to pay for the alternative. I have since stated that if she does not meet me then I will pay for the alternate care out of my child support and she will receive the remainder.

Can I do this? Will I face legal action? How will this reflect upon me should we return to court? If she chooses to prevent visitation, can I involve the police for parental kidnapping?
To add to this I should note that we will most likely return to court. My son is not doing well in school, and since success in school was the reason for her primary custody I belive a change is needed. It’s been 3 years since primary custody was given to her and his academics have increasingly suffered.


I would think that while the child was visiting with you - that you would need to provide the child care and pay for it. That is your time to spend with the child and see that there needs are met…since she has primary custody, i can see why she should pay for child care since that is her time with the children and making sure there needs are met on her time. I think that what your child does while they are with you - you should be repsonsible for… it would not look good in court - if you deducted the amount of child care from that because she could get you for not paying the full agreed upon amount and would not look good…I can’t see why because she has primary physical custody she would have to pay for child care on your time.


It may be odd that I would suggest that she pay for child care. However, our papers clearly state that she is responsible for child care, these papers do not say only on her time. Verbatum, the order says “Child Care - plaintiff (my son’s mom) is responsible for child care and all costs associated.” Since the custody order does not say she is responsible only on her time, I understand them to mean she is responsible at all times. I do not mean to argue as I appreciate the advise, or second opinion. It’s just that this is how I understand them. Do you still think that I am violating this? I am just trying to do as was ordered?


You cannot unilaterally change or adjust child support. You must file a motion to modify the current order and explain your side of the story to a judge, otherwise you risk her filing a motion to have you held in contempt of court for not paying support as ordered.
If she refuses you visitation it is not parental kidnapping. You will need to file a motion to have her held in contempt of court.