My fiancé is hesitant to get married because when my ex wife finds out that we are engaged she will probably try to go after my future wife's money to get more child support. Is there any way my fiancé can protect herself? I pay my child support every month on time, but just to be spiteful, can my ex-wife will probably try to make me pay more just because we will be one income? What are our rights?
Family Law Attorney
Your fiance's income is not income for purposes of child support, as she has no obligation to support them. It might help if your fiance consulted with a family law attorney to explain how child support works. You can also consider a pre-nuptial agreement, which clearly defines which income is sole and separate and which income is community.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
This is a great question. Thankfully Arizona family law is well grounded in common sense (yes there are always exceptions), and if something sounds wrong on its face it usually probably is. So, that being said, your ex can NOT look to your new wife's income to try to increase child support. Your new wife has no legal duty to support your child and thus there are no legal grounds to look at your new wife's income to in essence increase your income to increase child support. So unless you leave the toilet seat up and the cap off the tooth paste tube, there is no reason your fiance should not marry you. For purposes of completeness, note that courts can look to other sources of income in addition to your 40/hr week job though. For example if you had a roommate that was paying you rent, or a rental property that was generating net rental income, or payments from a trust, and similar other sources of additional income, the judge can look to include other sources of income. But your new wife's income or separate wealth should not be included. I encourage you to review the Arizona Child Support Guidelines, A.R.S. 25-320 and you may also want to speak to an attorney to go over child support issues in greater detail. Good luck and congratulations on your engagement.
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