Question about non-custodial parent paying 1/2 medical bills...

Discussion in 'All About Families' started by Kati, Apr 22, 2011.


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  1. Kati

    Kati Senior Member Plus

    My stepson, whom we never see (we've seen him 2 times since school started in August), lives with his mom. We've always agreed with the mom to do things "between us" and not by the court order - STUPID idea my husband agreed to long ago before I was in the picture. But it's worked for 11 years. Until now, and now we're doing things via the court order. And this means we are going to start paying 1/2 of the medical bills that insurance doesn't cover. Our court order says she has 10 days from receiving the bill, to send it to us to pay our portion.

    So today, we get all of these bills from her. The only one I'm questioning, is a bill from a dental cleaning that happened in December. She's sent me a bill (a PAST DUE 90+ DAYS BILL) that says we owe $107 (half of that) because insurance didn't cover it. Because it's from a December appointment, and she's apparently received bills probably every month from it, but she's just now showing us a bill from this month, do we have to pay it???

    I know most people say to just do the "right" thing and pay it, but we've been fighting with her for years over the income tax that she's claimed on the odd years that the court order says we are to claim my stepson, not to mention the fact that she plans things for him every single weekend so that he has to tell us he can't come over. And she talks bad about my husband on her FB page and no telling what she tells my stepson (besides "if you ever choose to go live over there with your dad, you can never come back to me, ever!").... I just don't feel happy about sending her money like that if I don't legally have to from what the orders say.

    Anyone been there before and know what to do? My DH's dad is an attorney but not in family law, but I'm thinking he might be able to help give us advice but we don't like to go to him unless absolutely needed.

    Thanks for any advice you may have!


  2. TeriMomOf4

    TeriMomOf4 Senior Member Plus

    I have gotten bills from a doctor's office that look like they are late because the insurance hadn't processed it in a timely manner.
    Having been on the other side of it, I think you should pay your half.

    Also, as the step parent, you don't want to be the one that is being made out to be the bad guy for the financial concerns. Take the high road.
  3. mom2-1xx1xy

    mom2-1xx1xy Senior Member Plus

    I know of very few dental plans that don't cover preventive care, so i would find out why it wasn't covered first. If I take my kids a week early it will get refused, so it may have been her mistake. I agree with taking the high road if it is a valid bill. Does he live locally? My kids' dad takes them to all of there activities when they are with them. Just because you have him doesn't mean he can't do what he commits to doing.
  4. Kati

    Kati Senior Member Plus

    He lives about an hour from us, so it makes it hard when he has multiple events scheduled during the weekend.

    As for the bill - we looked into it, and it looks like insurance didn't pay for it initially because they said our insurance was cancelled on the 1st of Dec, when it wasn't actually cancelled until the 31st, and they reinstated it - his ex just never re-filed the claim like the insurance company said to do, so they billed her for it. So really, once we send in the claim again, it should be completely taken care of.

    I'm all about taking the high road, but the bill said this was bill number two, the first one having been sent to her in January after filed with insurance. That's why I was questioning it, in case she starts sending us bills from other months prior to now. I don't think she will, but I just wanted to know what the norm was.

    Thanks :)
  5. Karsyn's Mommy

    Karsyn's Mommy Senior Member

    In our court order is says that I have up to 180 days to submit copies of medical bills that are not covered to Karsyn's dad. He then has the same to pay his half to me. I know that if you submit with in 30 days then the other party only has 30 to pay it. All of this is according to my papers though and they sometimes vary from child to child so I would read the papers. It should have every circumstance outlined!
  6. Rachel Z

    Rachel Z Senior Member Plus

    One thing I thought about was that if your SDS is under your husband's insurance, I would be making sure on each of those bills you get, that she has paid her part. Otherwise, those medical offices will put it on your husband's credit and it will go to collections.

    Sorry you have to deal with this hassle.
  7. 1girl1boyrdh

    1girl1boyrdh Senior Member

    My ex husband is ordered to pay 1/2 of the medical bills not covered by insurance. However I never take her to the dr or the dentist without telling him first and without telling him when I leave there what he will owe. He has always paid the next time he picked her up and we have never had an issue. I would ask her to do the same or look in your paperwork to see if she is required to do that. She shouldn't be allowed to take him to all these appts which hes responsible for without notifying the father since he is paying for a portion. I would explain to her that she wouldn't want you taking him to appts on the weekends in which she was responsible for 1/2 as well. I know this is not as civil as all divorced parents are b/c my sister is in a completely opposite situation.
  8. ASanders

    ASanders Senior Member Plus

    If they have a joint managing conservatorship with the child he is supposed to be notified of and able to make half the decision as to if he wants it done and such. If they do not then she can do whatever, whenever. If they do in fact have this joint managing conservatorship then he can tell her he wants to be present for ALL appointments/ER visits unless it is a life threatening treatment he is entitled to be there to make the decision, too.

    As far as payment goes he can ask the offices to split the bill in half after insurance has paid their part and send him half and her half and she should be the guarantor on hers and he on his. If they cannot do this....then he should mail his half in with a CHECK directly to the company. If he gets a mark on his credit then he can send the divorce decree where it states she also pays half and his bank statements/canceled checks and have it taken care of....and he can also take her back to court for contempt. If they do have ordered visitation and she is not letting him come over she is also in contempt and the judge will make her follow visitation and if she refuses she will have to bring him to the court and release him to his father and he is also likely to gain custody if she makes the judge mad enough.
  9. jdlott74

    jdlott74 Guest

    Who's insurance is your DH son on? The mom or his? Who ever is the policy holder is is who the bill should be going to. Unfortunately due to HIPAA, if your husband is NOT the policy holder then the providers office can't talk to your DH about the bill legally. Now if your DH is the policy holder then the bills actually should be going to him because he is the guarantor. You can call and get that changed. If they give you a hard time about it, you need to fax them the divorce decree. If the insurance is in your husband's name, has the insurance been sending you EOB's on your step-son?


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