By Robert L. Mues   |   June 13th, 2009

child_surv.jpgI came across an interesting survey last month in the Gordon Poll Youth Survey published by the Wilmington Institute Network. Dr. Robert Gordon is the founder and director of the Wilmington Institute of Trial and Settlement Sciences. He is a past president of the Texas Psychological Association and is author of “On the Witness Stand.” He is both a clinical psychologist and a lawyer. The work of Dr. Gordon and the institute team has been featured on the MacNeil-Lehrer News Hour, ABC, Nightline, CNN, Fox News, Larry King Live, Good Morning America and USA Today.

The Gordon Poll Youth Survey focuses on family life issues. It is conducted for the benefit of parents, educators and members of the legal and mental health professions. The May 2009 survey was compiled from a sample size of 1,000 children between ages 14-18, and they are from a self-selected national sample that includes all 50 states.

The Question for May was: “In a divorce, how much money should each parent pay to support their children?” n for May was: “In a divorce, how much money

Answers in %

Each parent should pay the same

[bar.gif] 40.22%

The parent who earns more should pay more

[bar.gif] 32.96%

The parent who doesn’t live with the kids should pay more

[bar.gif] 19.55%

The one who wanted the divorce should pay more

[bar.gif] 7.262%

Here are a few selected comments from participants who indicated that each parent should pay the same:

“Yes, one parent may earn more, or one may not have custody, but both parents are equally, biologically responsible for their child. Just because someone earns more doesn’t make it their job to pay more.”

“They were in this together and they are both the parents, so they should be equal, so there’s no fighting.”
“This would help kids the most.”

Here are some selected comments from participants who indicated that the parent who earns more should pay more:

“The children need to be provided for and the parents should do so equally. But if one parent makes more, they should pay more, taking the strain off the parent making less. The ones who can afford it should pay.”
“If they have more money, more should go to the kid.”
“Each parent should pay an amount proportional to their income.”

Here are selected comments from participants who indicated that the parent who doesn’t live with the kid should pay more:

“Taking care of kids is not just about money. The parent living with the kids contribute something much more important than money. The LEAST the other parent can do is pay more.”
“They don’t have to drive them everywhere and do everything for them.”
“Both parents should have a part in their child’s upbringing, whether by actually raising or offering financial support.”

And, these selected comments are from participants who indicated that the parent who wanted the divorce should pay more:

“The one who decides to ruin the family deserves to lose more money.”
“If they didn’t want to pay, they shouldn’t have made me.”
“If one parent was ‘innocent’ in the divorce, then the other should bear the brunt.”

Click here to read more comments from the survey participants. I will be bringing you more USA Youth Survey results in the future!

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Robert L. MuesAbout The Author: Robert L. Mues
Robert Mues is the managing partner of Dayton, Ohio, law firm, Holzfaster, Cecil, McKnight & Mues, and has received the highest rating from the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review for Ethical Standards and Legal Ability. Mr. Mues is also a founding member of the "International Academy of Attorneys for Divorce over 50" blog.

Kids Say That Divorced Parents Should Pay The Same Amount For Child Support
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One thought on “Kids Say That Divorced Parents Should Pay The Same Amount For Child Support

  • July 6, 2009 at 8:57 am

    I don’t think it’s fair for one parent to pay more just because they make more. My dad pays child support to my mom and still buys for me out of his own pocket. There’s always confusion because my dad says “That money that I send down there every month is for you! It’s not supposed to be spent on bills!” then my mom says, “Child support is for support of the child whether that be paying the light bill or buying food.” I understand where they’re both coming from but what can I do about it. Maybe if they want to go back to court then they should take me with them and let the judge hear my side of the story. I personally think that I should get at least half of the child support money every month. I know she needs help but I have needs to. Some of my clothes are from three years ago but I haven’t gotten much bigger so they still fit but the point is she’s tired of me asking her for money and he’s tired of paying child support and then buying me clothes a week later. I say hear me out and let the judge decide. Luckily I’m 14 and in four more years I’ll be gone and all this confusion will be over.

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