Child Support Modification and Arrears

by Brian
(Macon, GA)

My ex and I divorced 13 years ago. When our decree was put into place I was 19 yrs old and had just joined the Air Force, my ex was still in high school. My court ordered child support was worded as such "$295 a month or 20% of pay, whichever is greater." So I began paying $300 a month, because it was greater than the 20%. Over the past 13 years my ex has gone on to remarry (twice) and I have since completed my 8 yrs active duty and I am now a civilian with the AF. Once my ex married her latest husband ( a man whos family has a little bit of money) she made it known that she didn't need my child support any longer, and that I could keep it and just not see our daughter, letting her new husband adopt her, I declined.


After a brief stint on a reality show and spending her new husband's money left and right, she increasingly made it difficult for me to see our daughter (she's plan trips on my weekends, and not let me have her on holidays etc.) 5 years ago I got a promotion and I bumped the child support up to $400 a month, I paid my daughter's health insurance and gave her mother significantly more money for extra things in addition to my child support. This past year my ex and her husband have run into some financial trouble (bankruptcy, foreclosure etc.

Not because they are victims of the economy, but because they are irresponsible.) All of the sudden my ex decides that I am not paying enough money in CS, that I am not paying the 20% in fact...I have never missed a CS payment, and I have been paying (or so i thought) the correct amount for the past 13 years and my daughter is very well cared for. My ex just got an attorney and he mentioned something about arrears....I went ahead and filled for a CS modification, because clearly, 13 years later, I make more money and so does her mother....

I have never neglected my financial responsibilities to my daughter...and when we do the modification, I will be paying more CS, which is fine, will I be held responsible for my pay increases over the past 13 years and be ordered to pay arrears because I interpreted the court order incorrectly, that is if I misinterpreted it incorrectly at all??? If she wanted more money, shouldn't she have filed a modification years ago? Instead of when she finds herself broke?

There are several things I have done over the past years to keep civil...I never filed a contempt against my ex, even though she never followed the visitation orders....and she has NEVER EVER met me half way, for thirteen years I have been driving from Warner Robins, GA to Gainesville, GA....and it has cost me a fortune...

The fact that I filed the CS Mod proves that I am proactive, and I want the new court order to be correct, with the new child support calculator...however I am a newlywed (2 years) and I am worried my blood sucking ex is going to try and get back child support...even though I believed i was paying the correct amount and never missed a payment...help?

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