What to do if my mother uses our child support for other things?

I’m 17 years old. My mother receives child support for me and my older sister. My older sister is currently in colleg; I stay with my mom. She uses our child support for other things instead of us. Is it possible for my 21 year old sister and I to receive our child support in our name instead of her?

Asked on September 15, 2012 under Family Law, Alabama

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You are writing from the state of Alabama, correct?  Your state protects the interests of its children and holds their rights near and dear to their heart and their justice system.  The law there allows a court great leeway in dealing with support issues and this includes the authority to order an accounting where there is evidence that a significant amount of money awarded to a custodial parent for child support is not being used for the benefit of the child.  Generally, the non custodial parent would request the accounting.  Now, you write here that your Mom uses the money for "other things" but you do not give specifics.  The money is supposed to go to support your basic needs: food, clothing, shelter.  If the agreement states it is to go to a gymnastics afterschool class then that too.  The payments do not mean that you are permitted to use them to buy a car or go on a vacation.  Speak with your Dad.  Good luck.


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