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Can father modify daycare payment orders if mother is profitting from it, rather than hiring daycare?

Your Question:
Thank you for providing this forum, it is a great resource.

1. Can DCS override a court order which states that DH pays daycare directly, and give the money to BM to do what ever she wants with it? (DH fell behind on payments to daycare a couple of years ago, yes, we now know, HUGE mistake)

BM pockets all daycare money and sends us fake, forged receipts with no specific dates or times making tracking her work-related daycare needs impossible.

She does this so it looks like she is using up all daycare money even though she only works 5-6 days per month and the kids have all been in school full time. Her plan is to prevent us from getting daycare decreased due to the fact that the amount we're paying was set back when the kids were in diapers.

Is there any regulation on daycare funds that are transferred to BM's? It just doesn't seem right that she can pocket all of that money every month and make up fake receipts to cover it.

The kids went to the same daycare for four years straight until she found out from DCS that she can do what ever she wants with the daycare money, so now her parents watch the kids for free and she signs their names to her receipt book.

DH is so fed up he doesn't bother trying to fight anymore, as he has lost so many times. But I get tired of watching BM get away with too much. I know karma will come into play but what can we do in the mean time?

Any suggestions would be great. Thanks.

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My Answer:

Thanks for writing.

I would imagine that DCS assumed jurisdiction when your husband fell behind on payments. But I'm not an attorney, so I don't know the accuracy of my guess.

However, I think he should have a decent shot at modifying the court orders on daycare.

To succeed, you'll need proof that she doesn't spend the money on daycare, that she only works five or six days per month, and that her parents watch the kids. Further, you'd argue (as you pointed out), the kids are in school for 2/3 of the business day now.

If it were my case, and I were representing myself (as I've been doing for half a year, with mixed success), I would ask the court to order the following:

1. Dad is to contribute to the costs of daycare services used only when the mother has income-producing work.

2. Dad is to pay the daycare provider directly (i.e., per the court's original order, which DCS apparently trumped).

3. The daycare provider must be licensed in your state to provide daycare.

All of the above accomplishes what the court has as an objective-- to care for the kids while mom works. If you gather the evidence that she is profitting from the daycare contributions, and that she's receiving daycare for free from her family members, then #2 and #3 would likely be a no-brainer.

To succeed, you'll need credible evidence. If you have receipts with her parents' signatures on them, then duh. You may also want to hire a private investigator for a couple weeks to document the true amount of time that daycare seems needed after school. See the book Child Custody A to Z on my Recommended Books page to understand the importance of building evidence.

This comes down to a cost/benefit analysis for you. It shouldn't be because it annoys you that the mother has extra income. The only analysis you and your husband need to do is: "Will we save much more money over the next many years than it will cost us right now to modify the orders on daycare?" If the answer is yes, then you give it a shot... but either do it right or not at all.


This website gives common sense advice that is not intended to act as legal guidance nor psychological guidance. The author is neither an attorney nor licensed psychologist. For specific legal guidance or specific psychological guidance, consult with a licensed professional.

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