Do you believe in child support?
So, before these polls, I would have said no. However, I had a few conversations with classmates (one of which is a single mother), and family members. My original stance was one of a narrow view, and clouded by bitterness. It is also based on the belief that fathers should have their children 50% of the time, and therefore should not have to pay child support.
Now, I realize that not everything is as black and white as I had originally thought. There are fathers out there that don’t have 50/50 access, and need to financially provide for their children.
What should child support be based on?
I found the results of this question really interesting. For my Instagram poll, the options were either based on income or cost of child. Cost of child won at 60%. On Twitter, cost of child at 29%, and fixed income at 35%.
Basing child support off of income or cost of a child could be good or bad, depending on your financial situation. If you make great money, then paying based on cost of child could save you some money. However, if you didn’t make great money, paying based on cost of child instead of on income, it could be way too far out of budget.
I did not expect “fixed income” to have such a high score. But this begs the question: What would that number be? Would that number be high, or would it be fairly low?
Should Dads monthly expenses be taken into consideration when ordering child support?
The interesting piece about this is that they kind of are, but not really. The courts don’t look and say “Dad pays x amount on insurance, y on mortgage, z on all these other bills” and come to a reasonable amount based on what he can afford. Unfortunately, for a lot of fathers, which bills they can fall behind on.
On both polls, “yes” won by a fair landslide, and I would have to agree. Monthly expenses should be taken more seriously so that fathers can actually live.
Should child support be monitored?
I have absolutely no idea how the courts would effectively monitor the spending of child support. I have heard idea’s such as a “child support card”, where what is spent on that card can be watched. This sounds like a great idea. However, that is not to say that it is the most effective way to fully track how the money is being spent.
Do I think it should be monitored? In a way, yes. There are some mothers out there that have children in ill fitting and old clothing, but they themselves have a fresh set of nails and foiled hair.
Should 50/50 custody be automatic when in the process of settling custody?
Opinions of this matter was pretty 50/50 split on agreeing for both yes and no.
At first, I agreed that both fathers and mothers should have access to their children on even times during a custody battle. My logic comes from a space of being in the position where a good father had abuse allegations thrown around, and his time was very limited with his child. We found out the hard way that is very hard to prove you’re a good parent, especially when you don’t get to see your children. It’s very easy to claim and prove a parent is unfit than it is to prove one is.
Then, thinking outside of my experiences, I had to think critically about other situations. Some parents are trying to leave real abuse situations, high conflict, high crime, substance abuse, or simply an unfit parent. Giving both parents 50/50 could put another parent and/or child(ren) in harms way.
I’m not exactly sure where I stand on this, as it is so circumstantial. Not to mention, some parents use the “silver bullet” (abuse and assault allegations, sometimes that are untrue), which would ultimately just make the system work the way it works now.
Should there be a maximum number allowed to be ordered for child support?
The majority of the poll agreed that yes, there should be. And I strongly agree.
This is the question that really got me thinking. I was in my Legislation class in college, and we were reading about “Ontario Family Law in the News”. There were a few different news articles we had to read, and this particular one from the Toronto Star really caught my attention. The author of this article was clearly a Fathers Rights Movement activist, and they made some really compelling points. I’ll be paraphrasing here, as I don’t have access to this article anymore, but I had written down this point. “In Canada, the most amount paid monthly for child support was $65,000”.
THAT’S ASTRONOMICAL. The author of this article went on to say that child support has become spousal support in disguise, especially that of a relationship that never married. At what point do we say that enough is enough?
The family court system is corrupt, out dated, and broken. That is for certain.
I believe that good, willing, able fathers (and mothers) should be getting their children 50% of the time, and have an equal say about what goes on in that child’s life medically and educationally. A lot of these fathers are being forced out of their children’s lives by bitter mothers (and even mothers being forced out of their lives by bitter fathers), and in the end it’s the child that suffers.
Because I believe that children should spend equal time with both their parents, I believe child support is unnecessary. If a child is with each parent 50% of the time, then each parent takes up 50% of costs, and therefore no need to pay the other parent.
However, for fathers (and mothers) that either can’t, don’t want to, or shouldn’t have their children 50% of the time, child support is necessary. Parents are financially obligated to their child. That being said, some parents are being ordered an amount they struggle with.
Sometimes, child support gets in the way of the paying parent to be able to provide a stable, healthy, happy living environment for the children. Parents who pay child support can struggle to pay all their bills, so in return they have to sacrifice some essentials. This can also mean that the paying parent cannot afford a nice home for their child, toys, clothes and good food. I believe that child support needs to be more proportionate to the other bills a parent must pay.