Can an ex-spousecollect against SS benefits for back child support from 20 years ago?

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Can an ex-spousecollect against SS benefits for back child support from 20 years ago?

My ex-wife says that when I retire and collect my SS that she is entitled to half of it for back child support. She raised our daughter and I raised our 2 sons. I payed child support for 7years; she never paied me any support for the boys. This was in the 80s. We then agreed between the 2 of us that I would no longer have to pay support since I was raising the 2 boys. The child in question is now 33. Can she do this?

Asked on February 20, 2011 under Family Law, North Carolina

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Well, maybe and maybe not.  Most likely the statute of limitations on the matter has run and she will be out of luck.  But if it has not then I would consider speaking with an attorney in your area on the matter.  In fact, pay for the consultation even if she does not go to court right now.  Understand that you were ordered to pay the support and that only the court can grant a modification.  What you and she agreed to was a modification under the law.  So the original order stood - and still stands - in effect.  If the statute has not passed and if she was able to make this argument before a judge I am sure that you will be able to bring up raising your sons as a "set off" to her monetary requests.  But really let this be a lesson to you.  Good luck.


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