Can I sue a relative for non-payment of child care expenses?

UPDATED: Feb 20, 2012

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Can I sue a relative for non-payment of child care expenses?

I provide child care for a relative of mine and she says she can’t afford to pay me so she is switching them to someone else next week. I told her that is fine but I will not be able to keep her kids until then as I need to go out and seek new employment. She is now refusing to pay her co-pay for this past week, sign time sheets and pay what she owes in back payments. Do I have a case to take her to court?

Asked on February 20, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you have an agreement with any person regardless of familial relationship concerning payment of child care expenses and that person fails to make payment as agreed to (oral or written agreement), you have a legal and factual basis to bring a lawsuit for money owed.

From what you have written, it appears that you have a legitimate dispute with a relative of yours for unpaid child care expenses. I suggest that you try and resolve your dispute with your relative informally rather than file a lawsuit against him or her.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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