A Custodial Parent can be ordered to pay child support to the non-custodial parent, according to the recent Turk decision by the Illinois Appellate Court. The appeals court reiterated that the case dealt with a very specific set of circumstances which justified allowing the mom to receive child support from the dad where the dad had sole custody of the kids.
First, the court considered the following facts: The dad made a lot more money than the mom. The mom had significant visitation or parenting time with the one of the children (being somewhat estranged from the other). She didn’t have the child for 50% of the time, but wasn’t far from it and saw her son a lot. During her significant parenting time, she incurred expenses for her child.
The court looked at decisions from other states where on occasion, the custodial parents were made to pay child support to a non-custodial parent, as those courts found it to be in the best interests of the children under particular sets of circumstances.
Finally, the Illinois Appellate Court did look at the best interests of the children in Turk, and felt that given the disparity in incomes and the amount of time that the mom had with her child, it was not wrong for the trial judge to have ordered that dad pay her child support. The amount of child support was not set by the Appellate Court who sent the case back to the trial judge for a determination.
What does this mean for parents in Illinois? Probably not much unless there is a unique set of circumstances whereby fairness and best interests of the child would dictate it. Taking such matters on a case by case basis is good when common sense or special circumstances really would warrant such a result, but this should not open up the floodgates whereby divorcing parents will decide to “give it a shot” as this will needlessly clog up our court system and in most instances, probably fail. The case is In re the Marriage of Turk found at 2013 IL App.(1st) 122486.
If you are a divorcing Illinios parent, it is important to learn how child support usually works. Give us a call or contact us at O'Connor Cadiz Law to schedue a confidential consultation about child support in your sitatuion.