A judge in rural Clinton County, New York, has decided that one deadbeat dad lacks appropriate budgeting skills, and has handed the dad, called Thomas M., a list of items he is forbidden from purchasing until he has repaid $14,000 in child support arrearages to his ex-wife on behalf of their two daughters. Thomas can’t buy cigarettes or alcohol, nor can he buy a hunting or fishing license or any other item that the judge considers not to be a necessity of life. He must have the Probation Department’s written permission to purchase certain other items, including furniture and clothing. Thomas’s lawyer questioned whether the judge had authority to make such an order, but the broad language of the applicable law certainly gives him a lot of leeway. Maybe if more dads were kept away from their internet service, hunting licenses, and restaurant dinners, there wouldn’t be $12.6 billion in child support arrearages.
About Lina Guillen
This blog is written by Lina Guillen. Specializing in family law, Lina writes and edits articles on a variety of topics including custody, visitation, support, and the financial aspects of divorce. Before arriving at Nolo, Lina practiced family law and civil litigation at several law firms in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lina received her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law and is an active member of the California State Bar.
About Emily Doskow
This blog was started by Emily Doskow, a practicing family law attorney and mediator. Emily was a Nolo editor, and author of Nolo’s Essential Guide to Divorce and co-author of several Nolo books, including A Legal Guide for Lesbian and Gay Couples and Do Your Own California Adoption: Nolo’s Guide for Stepparents and Domestic Partners.
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