You and your ex-spouse have a contentious relationship, and you’ve always found them controlling. Now that you’re co-parenting, things haven’t exactly improved. In fact, your ex-spouse is demanding that you “prove” that you’re using the child support that they pay solely for your child. If you can’t, they say they won’t continue to pay.
Can they do that? Not at all. Your co-parent can fuss and fume all they want but they have zero authority over how that money is spent, and zero authority to stop the payments if they’re unhappy. Child support is ordered by the court, and your ex could be in serious trouble if they just stop paying.
Child support can be used for many different things
Many people don’t fully understand the purpose of child support. It can be used specifically for things that the child needs, like clothing or school supplies. However, it can also be used for things that benefit the entire household, since that includes the child. That means child support can be used for the rent or mortgage where the child lives, the utility bills, groceries for the house and any other household needs.
Ideally, the court wants the child to have the standard of living that they would have enjoyed if their parents hadn’t divorced (or as close to it as possible), so child support represents the paying parent’s obligation in that area.
What if your ex-spouse threatens to take you to court to make you prove that you’re spending the money responsibly? Let them. Unless they have evidence that your child doesn’t have adequate food, shelter and clothing or their medical and educational needs aren’t being met, the court isn’t going to question how you use the child support you receive.
If your ex-spouse tries to carry through on their threat and ceases paying support, there are resources available to you that can help you assert your legal rights.