Bubba in AZ

by Bubba
(Phoenix, Arizona)

After reading a few entries on this site, and being the non-custodial, child support-paying parent, and from my experience with the child support system, it seems the system creates most of the problems that occur with child support being paid.


Once you become a paying member of the child support system, you are automatically categorized as a 'deadbeat dad'. In my case, in 7 years, I have never missed a payment. This, however, has never stopped the Arizona Division of Child Support Enforcement from treating me like I have never made a single payment. So much so that they have even gone as far as to report to all three credit bureaus that I am in arrears on child support payments. It's next to impossible to get that corrected, and it's against federal law to report false data to the credit bureaus...but there is no recourse.

When I first became a member of this system, I had several questions that I attempted to get answered by contacting ADCSE, instead of getting any answers, my 'case worker' simply called me a 'deadbeat dad' and was not interested in answering any question I had, but, was very open about putting me down, calling me every name in the book, and generally making me wonder why I ever bothered to contact them. On another occasion, several years later, I attempted to contact the ADCSE, just to inform them of my new address...remarkably, my 'case worker' was not interested in hearing about my request, but, again, was more interested in simply putting me down and calling me a 'deadbeat dad'. Needless to say, my new address was NEVER recorded by ADCSE. It was then that I contacted my Federal and State government representatives, in an effort to get some answers. I never heard a word back from them. It seems that this is such a hot potatoes issue, that they will not touch it.

It should also be noted that the court system looks at child support and visitation as two separate issues...one is not supposed to have any influence on the other. In my case, trying to get my visitation rights enforced has been very, very costly and provided hit and miss results. The custodial parent finally just told the judge that she didn't want there to be any visitation. After 7 years and 9 trips to court over visitation, that included her being found in contempt of court, she continues to do as she pleases. But, because of her total lack of cooperation pertaining to visitation have I stopped making child support payments? NO, I haven't.

It seems that in order to make this entire system more palatable for all involved, their needs to be more parity for all involved. The system needs to be revamped to be more open to work with and not against the paying party. They need to break down that wall that automatically exists for the paying party after being thrust into a very beauracratic and stigma driven system...that many do not understand. This includes the people who work there. There should also be some sort of accounting for what the child support is used for, after all, it is supposed to be for the children. In my case, the custodial parent uses the money I send for my kids every month to pay for her new truck and horse trailer, while my kids tell me they don't have any clothes to wear...??? Does this fall under the category of needs for the children?

There needs to be some approach that resolves the frustration that any paying party feels about how the system handles all of these issues. Is it no visitation, no child support? Is it no child support no visitation? Should there be a mandatory accounting of where the funds are spent by the custodial parent? Or, is it just that the agencies charged with enforcing the system should take a more caring approach when it comes to working with the paying party, and actually attempting to resolve issues instead of making things worse by just automatically classifying the paying party as a deadbeat?

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I get it!!
by: Anonymous

Not only do I understand and feel your pain in the whole situation but at the same time you are not the only one that gets shafted. Sometimes the parent that has the child(ren) is the one that gets the short end of the stick! The money part we don't all get our nails done because I know I don't and sometimes you think you send enough and it isn't. Anyhow the pain goes both ways and the sad part about it no matter who has the kids or who is paying what the kids are the ones that suffer the most

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Just an observation
by: Lisa

I feel for you Bubba. Currently my husband is sitting in jail as the one case worker he got who would not talk down to my husband or allow the other party to do was removed from his case. My husband was up to date with his payments until he lost his job a month and a half ago. So today he went to court only to have to call and tell me that he was being sent to jail but if I could come up with 2k for this chick then he'd be allowed to go home. He has never once even seen a picture of this child and she tested well over 30 men before reaching my husband. And she has stated to the judge that my husband will be allowed to see this child over her dead body. So here she and the court are honestly expecting me to take food out of our son's mouth to pay for her hair and nails and the new child she's knocked up with.

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Cover Your Butt
by: Anonymous

In everything you do, cover your butt! When you need them to change something like an address, you are better off typing/writing a letter, keep a copy and fowarding by certified mail for proof... or send via email. Whatever it takes to show you are doing what you are supposed to do.

Unfortunately I believe in every state in america nobody keeps up with what the parents do with the child support. It is to be given to the parent for use of the kids, whether it be to pay the bills, food, etc. Too bad many times the parents make the children suffer for the own selfishness - welcome to america

what I would do is make a recording of your case worker chewing you out and call the news and show them how your loving taxes are paying for such nice people to work in this department.

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