Germany: Maintenance of a child after divorce

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─ Hello, dear editors!

Help me please. The fact is that I broke up with my husband. He is German. It turned out that he was constantly deceiving me. Didn’t work properly, spent all the time with friends, played. Now he also earns little. He does not pay child support. We have two of them (six months and almost two). They pay me money for children (Unterhaltvorschuss).

It seems to me that I met a man. I’m not going to live with him yet. Now I want to understand a person before tying myself in relationships. He looks decent. From the neighbors and my husband, tricks immediately went. The neighbors reported to my husband that they saw me with a new young man. And my husband threatens to report my friend to the department of youth affairs, from where they pay me money. He says, as soon as I get along with a new man, they will stop paying me money. This is true?

Should the stepfather provide for the children? What if we start living together, and I don’t work for now, and the salary isn’t enough for everyone? Will we be paid extra? Does this rule also apply if we just live together? Or after marriage?

And my husband also demands to give him part of the money that they pay me for children in exchange for silence. Can I accuse him of blackmail? What do you advise?

Victoria R., Mannheim.

─ Dear Victoria!

With such a perception of legal reality, you should definitely contact a lawyer, preferably specializing in family law. If you do not have enough funds to pay for the services of a lawyer, the state can take over the costs.

First of all, child support does not depend on whether you have a partner or a new spouse. The maintenance must be paid by the parent with whom the children do not live. You must demand this content through a lawyer from your father. This is your responsibility. In particular, this obligation will be required by the Labor Agency if you receive payments from it. Payments from the Office for Children and Youth Affairs (Jugendamt) are not a complete substitute for supporting the father. This is why they are called Alimony Advance Payments (Unterhaltsvorschuss). They are provided, in principle, for a transitional period, until the father pays child support. Payments of this department are below the minimum alimony provided by law.

Once again, a new marriage does not affect the payment of alimony in any way. The father’s demand for silence to give part of the payments that the Office for Children and Young People transfers to you (money that he is actually obliged to pay) is, firstly, proof that he considers you absolutely not versed in German realities and law. Secondly, this act is a crime (extortion) and may lead to criminal punishment.

Maxim BRITANOV, lawyer.

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