The wheels of justice don’t seem to move one damn bit. Okay, I’ll start with the “good” news.
I got notice that my lawyer will be appearing in court to get my case re-instated on the 18th. It sounds like Jerry Lee was served right around Valentine’s Day, if not ON Valentine’s Day. I suppose that explains the new amount of spousal support he paid on the 29th.
He’s still off. As you may know he modified support on his own back in May last year. Upon finding out that he had had a job pretty much the entire time I let him know he was $700 a month short and asked him if he was going to continue to pretend like he didn’t have a job and was paying all he could, or if he would be paying the correct amount. From that moment he upped the amount he was giving me but he was still short by more than $370. Now, he’s taking the amount he has been paying me (the one that is $370 short) and then adding the $370 onto it. Of course, I don’t know if this will be a long term thing or not because he’s only done it once. If he is planning on keeping this up until we go to court then the end result will be I’m getting a little over $200 more than what he’s court ordered to pay. We’ll see. I don’t have high hopes for him.
Nevertheless, it’s a small victory of justice. It only took four months to finally get before the judge to put it on the docket, and it will probably be another two-three months before we actually have a court date, but those old, rusty wheels are moving finally.
Now for the bad news. I still have not heard anything from my caseworker or the state of Mississippi. Hell, it’s possible the judge there took jurisdiction and my attorney will go before the judge and he’ll have to throw out most of her case.
I’m going to do a little PSA right now. Start garnishment proceedings immediately after your divorce is finalized. Some people are lucky and their state requires payment to go through them. If you’re not one of those lucky ones run directly from the courtroom to the clerk’s office or wherever you need to go in order to get the payments garnished. Especially if you have a very special ex who moved out of state. Doubly so if not only did your ex move out of state but also if your ex forced you into leaving the state in which you got said divorce. That’s an even more special kind of clusterfuck.
I turned my papers in on January 25th. Back in 2019. It’s been more than a year and he’s still not garnished.
I realize I stopped the process in the summer based upon the information I was given. The caseworker scheduled the interstate meeting. I told her I was withdrawing my case. She told me all I could do was NOT show up. There is a month between my last email to her (June 12th) when I told her I was withdrawing and when I found out he had a job, and had in fact had a job the entire time (July 15th). My original interstate meeting was scheduled sometime in that month. In August I gave my caseworker the go ahead to set up a new interstate appointment so that I could move forward. And keep in mind, me hitting pause didn’t matter anyway. By the time I had my original interstate appointment and she sent everything off to Kentucky he was already living in Mississippi. We’d still be on the same time frame. Hell, we might even be a little further behind because Kentucky wouldn’t have been obligated to let her know he was no longer a resident for 60-90 days. That would have brought us to September- which is when I ended up meeting with her anyway- or possibly, October.
Now it’s been six months since my interstate appointment. When I walked out of her office she told me to give it 60-90 days. Maybe I’m a little fuzzy on the day to month ratio but I thought 60-90 days was basically two to three months. Not six.
Of course, once we get close to the supposed 60-90 day timeframe I’m told that now the county has another 45 days to make a decision. Again, a little fuzzy on the ratio but I could have sworn that amounted to approximately 6 weeks. Are these business days or calendar days? The caseworker has never said. Apparently they like everything to be a big surprise.
She’s never said if I’m notified, how I’m notified, what else I have to look forward to, what kind of timeline I should expect. I flat out asked her for a time frame on when I could expect garnishment to begin and her response was a decisive, “I don’t know. I don’t have a timeline for you.”
I, too, have a job. It might surprise her to know that I’m frequently called with questions. My answer has never been, “I don’t know.” If I don’t know the answer to a question I either ask around or I point them in the direction of the person or department who would know.
I’m not asking for a minute by minute play. I’d simply like to know what’s going to happen next and what is the general time frame for this to occur. For example: First, we need to do A. Then we will do B. Then C. Then D. Then E. Obviously I can’t give you an exact time that this will be over but A usually takes x amount of time, B usually takes Y amount of time, C usually takes about z amount of time, and so on and so on. That’s business days, not calendar days by the way, so you need to mark out all weekends and federal holidays. This is what you need to do at each step. You will be notified in this manner.
Is that so difficult? I don’t need hard and fast dates. Just a damn timeline. The 60-90 days has come and gone. The last time I heard from my caseworker was February 5th, over a month ago. She had called the Child Support office on January 29th and reached a person working at the help desk. The caseworker was supposed to call her back. Over a month later and I’ve never heard any follow up. Maybe the county decided not to take the case. Maybe all of this has been for nothing. Who knows? Not me! It’s one big surprise!
In the meantime I get to keep guessing when, how much, and if Jerry Lee will pay me what he’s supposed to. Actually I already know he’s not going to pay me what he’s supposed to. He hasn’t in almost two years.
My son graduates in 15 months. At that point this whole issue will be a moot point. I’m laying 50/50 odds on whether or not this is completed by then.
P.S. Also just found out the address I had for him is a vacant residence, which means he’s moved again. It also somewhat explains why he didn’t pay as he was supposed to in November. Sounds like he’s got a new job- yet again. If it’s in another state and I have to start this all over again I’m going to cry.
And… he’s hired an attorney for this show cause hearing.