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Who is responsible for childrens medical expenses

My son has to have an operation that will cost $2000.

The father feels he does not have to pay 50/50 because the money from the settlement of the house and the child support that he has paid (which is not very much over the last 5 years he has only paid less than $6,000) should cover the cost therefore I should pay for the operation in full.

He has earnt over $100,000 over the last 3 years.  I have earnt less than $60,000 in the last 3 years.Go figure.  I cant understand his rationalisation. Does this man give a damn about his own sons well being or what I am totally gobsmacked.

All this is irrelavant to the subject which is - what is a fathers responsibility to his children?
Do you have court orders? If so, do they state that he is responsible for half of all medical costs?
If you don't, then you may be on a hiding to nothing. CSA does cover normal medical expenses which can include the likes of glasses etc. You have provided very little information re income and care percentage, so if he has paid the CSA assessed amounts, then he has paid the "correct" figure. Without court orders, he is under no legal obligation to pay half, and you may have to apply to CSA for a COA to have the operation costs included in the assessment.

But I have a series of questions for you, which you probably won't like, but you should consider them and your responses.

What is the operation for? Why does it cost so much? Do you have private health insurance for the child? How much will you get back from Medicare? Was the father consulted about the surgery? Did you agree to the surgery without discussing all the options with the father? Did the father say that he would pay half the costs? Did you agree to the surgery without consulting the father? Are you paying for the surgery so you don't have to wait on the public hospital waiting list?
andykay said
CSA does cover normal medical expenses which can include the likes of glasses etc. You have provided very little information re income and care percentage, so if he has paid the CSA assessed amounts, then he has paid the "correct" figure. Without court orders, he is under no legal obligation to pay half, and you may have to apply to CSA for a COA to have the operation costs included in the assessment.
Prescription glasses if determined as essential for a child by a Paediatric Optometrist (children's eye specialist) or any other medical treatment and/or equipment that is a non standard medical requirement (i.e. special to cater to the medical needs for a particular child) is not considered part of "general" medical and as such is not covered in the basic CS formula.  Where there are additional out of pocket expenses incurred by one parent (and providing these expenses are not a result of optional or elective procedures and treatments) then you may be able to lodge a COA under reason 2.  

Just as a doctor will perform emergency surgery without the consent of the patient or the patients family if it is medically determined as necessary to promote life (bound by their professional code…"duty of care") so too if any surgery or treatment for a child is deemed  medically essential (not optional/elective) by a specialist/s, then parents are also bound by their duty of care through their responsibilities to promote the child's wellbeing to provide this treatment.     


andykay said
What is the operation for? Why does it cost so much? Do you have private health insurance for the child? How much will you get back from Medicare? Was the father consulted about the surgery? Did you agree to the surgery without discussing all the options with the father? Did the father say that he would pay half the costs? Did you agree to the surgery without consulting the father? Are you paying for the surgery so you don't have to wait on the public hospital waiting list?
These are definitely questions that you must consider, especially those in relation to "other" options and urgency. 

Cheers

"Never, "for the sake of peace and quiet," deny your own experience or convictions". Dag Hammarskjold
I needed help with my case and couldn't afford a lawyer and found these guys invaluable  srl-resources.org
I spoke with a CSA officer who stated that glasses were considered an everyday expense and as such were already covered by the payment of CSA, and therefore the payer was under no obligation to pay any additional money.

Interestingly enough, my husband's ex demanded that he pay half for the glasses. There was no please or request, just a demand (as usual with this person). We got the glasses under our medical cover (she doesn't have any, and apparently if she did it isn't any of our business) and she didn't even say thank you.
That sounds very much like what we have heard - my Partner doesn't go beyond CSA legal requirements. As harsh as it sounds - he has been on the receiving end of MANY demands for money, has given it in the past and found out that the money was not used for it's intended purpose - i.e. new glasses & when the boy was asked about his 'new glasses' got the response "What glasses??" He has consistently maintained the approach if it is an Official Invoice then assistance with cost will be an option. Hand written invoices on dodgy stationary won't.

We have even had to respond to direct phone calls from irate Tennis Instructors - WHERE'S MY MONEY? Upon being politely informed that the payment of such activities wasn't our responsibility as we had neither consented to the activity and under current orders were not obligated to pay for it, also that we had NOT knowledge of the tennis lessons nor any official invoices for the said lessons. We were more than happy to assist with the activities in the future IF and when orders were drafted to accommodate such activities.

We also found out that the price we had been told by the coach and the mother were drastically different! Mother wanted to pocket a lot of extra $$$

However - back to medical expenses. Under our current orders - all LONG term health issues are Joint Parental Responsibility (not that we get consulted) and although this hasn't been tested as yet - then I dare say we will be hit up for money as well.
I have taken the precaution of Adding my step children and Partner onto my Medical Insurance Policy - fortunately this is very negligible cost. But provides peace of mind for Us. The mother is not aware of this as there is no need for her to be informed.
When all else fails go back to the CSA & to any official agreements in place. These will provide the basics of what is and isn't covered.
dirkepitt said
The mother is not aware of this as there is no need for her to be informed.
If she ever visits this site she will be. You have posted more than enough for her to identify you and her ex.
Honestly, If she ever did visit this site she might actually learn something!

The repercussions of her actions and her inability to put the interests of her child before her own prejudice.  The common thread I read within these forums is that parents come here wanting answers, and help. Acknowledgement that there are situations which require another opinion. In our case the mother only recognises her own opinion and no one else's matters.

If she learnt we had medical insurance - good on her, it's not for her it's for the boy.
dirkepitt said
Honestly, If she ever did visit this site she might actually learn something!
Yup, and she might learn enough if she is really vindictive to have a go at you through Section 121 and additionally also claim you have libelled her.
Conan said
….Yup, and she might learn enough if she is really vindictive to have a go at you through Section 121 and additionally also claim you have libelled her.

Really ? Are there proceedings under way here? This all looks to be about some child support issues.

FAMILY LAW ACT 1975 - SECT 121
Restriction on publication of court proceedings

             (1)  A person who publishes in a newspaper or periodical publication, by radio broadcast or television or by other electronic means, or otherwise disseminates to the public or to a section of the public by any means, any account of any proceedings, or of any part of any proceedings, under this Act that identifies:

                     (a)  a party to the proceedings;

                     (b)  a person who is related to, or associated with, a party to the proceedings or is, or is alleged to be, in any other way concerned in the matter to which the proceedings relate; or

                     ©  a witness in the proceedings;

is guilty of an offence punishable, upon conviction by imprisonment for a period not exceeding one year.

             (2)  A person who, except as permitted by the applicable Rules of Court, publishes in a newspaper or periodical publication, by radio broadcast or television or by other electronic means, or otherwise disseminates to the public or to a section of the public by any means (otherwise than by the display of a notice in the premises of the court), a list of proceedings under this Act, identified by reference to the names of the parties to the proceedings, that are to be dealt with by a court is guilty of an offence punishable, upon conviction by imprisonment for a period not exceeding one year.


Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 
Court proceedings have been completed - this is the aftermath of the last 2 years of my life and 11 of my partners.
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