Do financial obligationslisted in my divorce papers start the day of the divorce?

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Do financial obligationslisted in my divorce papers start the day of the divorce?

My ex-husband and I have 2 children. Last year, he had taken 1 to the doctor and now notified me of the unpaid balance. In our divorce papers, it says that we are to split medical expenses. Now do I have to pay for something that happened over a year ago and I am now getting charged for it? Would the divorce papers be effective as of their date, so past due accounts do not count against me? Also, he didn’t want maintenance and I see this as a form of maintenance, that should have been presented in court.

Asked on February 18, 2011 under Family Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

So the charge for the doctor was prior to your divorce?  And what you want to know is if you have to pay for half?  Was the child still half yours when he or she went to the doctor?  Then as his or her parent you were and are responsible for them under the law.  What you and your husband agreed to as an allocation of finances for their care does not in any way negate this.  It only allows the two of you to sue each other should either of you not live up to your end of the contract (which is what a divorce agreement is, by the way).  And you are incorrect in your assessment that the money is in any way to be construed as maintenance. Maintenance is for his benefit.  It has nothing to do with child support and obligations. 


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