Hi ladies! I don't know if this has been posted before because I didn't extensively peruse the posts but I have yet another court date coming up next week and was hoping for some opinions. I've heard many stories about how sometimes, a father is so far behind on child support, that he winds up still making child support payments in the form of arrears even after the children have grown and left the house. So my question is, what do you think a mother is entitled to do with the arrears money she receives? Is that to be used as child support and spent only on the children? Or is it reimbursement (to the mother) for the months, years, etc that she supported the children in the absence of child support? I guess it could be "controversial" but the way I see it, if the ex happens to be still paying the mother after all minor children are grown and no longer dependent, wouldn't that mean that the money is technically for the mother, regardless of whether or not they are still minor children?
**Thanks for the responses ladies!! I need to clarify though. I shared a little in one of my responses but I'll update here. I used the example of a woman receiving arrears after the children were grown to make a point but that is not my actual circumstance at the moment. All of my children are still minors and living at home and I receive an extra $100/week (arrears) in addition to my regular child support. There was about a 4 year period after the divorce where my ex was paying little to no child support at times and I was picking up the slack. When I finally took him back to court, the judge ordered my child support and arrears to be taken directly from his check by New York State child support. So I'm wondering what that money is to be applied to...only the children? Can I use some of it for necessities if need be? I'm unsure as to if that money is mine or not and I can't find any real solid advice about this matter.
Opinions are much appreciated but if anyone knows the actual, LEGAL answer to this, that would be awesome!**