Reform Child Support / Custody Laws
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The child support system is a failing and vastly flawed system nationally, however some states are arguably far worse than others.
Child support in 3 states continues to 21 years of age whether the "child" is attending school or not. This is wrong. Adult children who choose to either not attend a college or trade school, refuse to heed parents "reasonable requests," get pregnant, or willingly abandon the non custodial parent should be considered emancipated and not receive further support.
At 18 years of age, no one can have custody of this person as for all other purposes they are deemed an adult. They are considered responsible enough to vote, to enter into contracts... This is a "gray area" that cowardly politicians refuse to touch.
The basic percentages are based on an antiquated system where men were almost always the primary wage earner and traditionally women stayed at home to care for the children. That is no longer the case. With women's rights, there are now more opportunities for women and more pay equality than ever before. So why are men still being mistreated by a system that doesn't reflect who we are as a country any longer? 40 percent of households list the female as being the primary wage earner in the home. Yet none of our laws reflect this.
There should be a minimum threshold established to "raise a child". If welfare can tell individuals what it costs to feed a clothe a child, then there should be minimum and maximum standards in place. There should be an established difference between "needs and wants." A child needs a warm winter coat and boots, however they do not have to be expensive UGGs or Northface.
A non custodial parent should be able to see where their money is going... receipts for items such as groceries, doctor or dental visits, clothing, and utility bills should have to be submitted to give the courts a more accurate picture of the child's true expenses. It is the non custodial parents right to know that their contribution is DIRECTLY benefiting their child.
If a custodial parent or child intentionally alienates the non custodial parent and refuses visitation for more than 30 days without just cause, then child support payments should be forfeited until the custodial parent remedies this situation.
I do agree that childcare expenses should be shared so that the custodial parent can afford to work. Medical expenses should be shared. Some special needs children will require more assistance, which should be handled on a case by case basis.
Higher education expenses are a choice to pursue by an individual, those expenses should not be forcibly shared by parents.
I feel that a more fair solution to this would be that either parents maintain true physical custody until the age of 21, meaning that children cannot use their money to buy things such as cigarettes, new cars, pay for store issued credit accounts. The child should forfeit "adult privileges" such as voting, taking out loans or credit cards. They are either an adult or a child- OR child support ends at 18 unless the individual is attending school full time.
Pregnancy, intentionally misleading the courts about how much they work or their income, or alienating the non custodial parent should be grounds for immediate forfeiture of benefits. Custodial parent causing toxicity in the parent / child relationship of the non custodial parent should be treated as abandonment and rights to support at any age forfeited.
A more fair way of calculating the child's true expenses needs to be developed, and shared by BOTH parents. All costs should be divided in a more realistic and fair manner.
Visitation and support need to be handled as one. Not one by family court and one by magistrate. Violation by either party should be able to result in penalties on the other side.
Please sign this petition if you, or anyone you know has been abused by the child support system, custody system, or you too feel this system is broken down and needs desperate repair.
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