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I am a single father why should I pay child support if I have my kids 50%, we were never married and the state is going after me

Bremerton, WA |

the ex is going to the state to get child support from me and I have them 50% of the time and pay there school. Is there a way I can go above the state cause I don't see why I have to pay because she cant take care of herself with my boys. Should I go for full custody ?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. It matters not if you were married, you are a parent and a a parent has a statutory duty to financially support your children. If you want to reduce your support based upon a deviation, you have to file a Petition to set child support and a residential schedule.

    Please note that THESE COMMENTS ARE NOT INTENDED AS LEGAL ADVICE and are for informational purposes only. This response is not intended to create any attorney-client relationship and is only based on the limited facts given. The response might change should additional facts be learned and should not be relied on as legal advice. It is recommended that you consult with an attorney who can properly assess the situation, as well as all pertinent facts, prior to taking any action based on the foregoing statements


  2. If you have the kids over 50% of the time per an existing parenting plan, the state (if they have all the necessary info) should allow you a "residential credit" to reduce your child support obligation. Whether you have enough evidence to get custody depends on all the facts. A realistic appraisal of your situation has to be based on a more thorough evaluation of the court pleadings and a personal interview of you. It’s always best to consult with a good family law attorney to discuss the details before you act. See my AVVO Legal Guides on modification of parenting plans and child support for more information about the legal issues raised by your inquiry. Please keep in mind that although these Legal Guides are often informative, they are no substitute for legal advice from an attorney you have retained for consultation or representation. There are always exceptions to the general rules. Click on my photo. On my AVVO home page click on "Contributor Level - View Contributions" or scroll down further and click on "Contribution - Legal Guides." Scroll down the list of my 29 Legal Guides and select the topics relevant to your question. If you like my answer and Legal Guides, please make sure you mark them as “helpful” or “best answer”.

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  3. You probably need to file a petition to establish parentage, residential schedule and child support. Child support obligation is determined by combining both parents monthly incomes, finding the appropriate amount in the WA support schedules, applying the ratio of the incomes to that amount, and then further applying any appropriate credits (such as residential). It is not at all unusual for one parent to pay the other CS even with even time sharing. You should get some help from an attorney to adjust/establish the appropriate amount of support due.

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