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How much maintain & custody fee should I pay after divorce?

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cpcpcp
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How much maintain & custody fee should I pay after divor

Postby cpcpcp » Tue, 29 Apr 2014 5:49 pm

My wife earns around 90k/year and I earn around 95k/year, we have a 3 year old daughter, stay in 5 room hdb.

If we divorce, how much maintenance and custody will I pay her every month roughly? (I have not approached any lawyer yet, will probably do so in a few weeks)

How much chance I could get our daughter's custody?

Thanks a lot.

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Postby nanana » Thu, 01 May 2014 11:50 pm

don't think there is a set rule as how much you have to pay for the maintenance. You will just have to come up with an amount that everyone is 'happy' in order to avoid a contested divorce.

you'll most likely get joint custody of your child. Sole custody is only granted if the other party is unfit to be a parent, or she is willingly giving up her right for the custody. But do not confuse between custody and care & control. Care & control is usually granted to the mother, in which child lives together with the mother, so that she is able to take care of the child's daily needs.

sorry you have to go through this. good luck.

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Postby PNGMK » Fri, 02 May 2014 9:30 am

Are you expecting to pay child support only or spousal support as well?

However IME CS is highly variable. If you can get away with 10% of your income you've done well but I've heard others paying close to 50%. It does depend on your ex wife's ability to provide as well as the expected costs of rasiing the child.

HINT: try to settle and negotiate this out of court - you can do so I believe (I did) with a counseller from the FC. You have a much better chance of a reasonable settlement. ALSO try to avoid having the amount indexed or linked to your income (i.e. avoid a % - try to settle on an exact amount of $ per month) - that way in 10 years when your income is doubled - you're paying a lot less as a % of your income.

As a guideline the CS rates in Australia are 17% pre tax income for the first child, 27% for two etc.... until the supporting parent is so crippled they can never start again - a lot of men suicide out at that point.

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Postby JR8 » Fri, 02 May 2014 9:51 am

My advice would be to aim for:

- both accept that it's better to get it over with
- try and have some form of amicable desire to settle matters
- try and gauge and draw up a reasonable/equitable split of income/assets.

I would very much advise against instructing lawyers and going 'adversarial'. It is just dirty to the point of being evil and exploitative, hideously painful, and the lawyers drag it out in a made-up pi$$ing contest, down to starting WW3 over 'visitation rights for the pet hamster', ... and it goes on for as long as you can afford that at $500/hr.

It's way better, if you can do it, to leave with a bit of dignity intact and something left in your wallet.

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Is it possible to get the care & control of our child?

Postby cpcpcp » Sat, 03 May 2014 6:56 pm

Now she and her parents are very angry with me, it is not possible to us to 'discuss anything peacefully', I am afraid contested divorce couldn't be avoided in this case isn't it? Moreover, both sides want the care & control of the child, I understand that the court will favor mother but I could give all my money & my portion of property (total should be 300+k sgd) to her, will the court in this case change mind?

nanana wrote:don't think there is a set rule as how much you have to pay for the maintenance. You will just have to come up with an amount that everyone is 'happy' in order to avoid a contested divorce.

you'll most likely get joint custody of your child. Sole custody is only granted if the other party is unfit to be a parent, or she is willingly giving up her right for the custody. But do not confuse between custody and care & control. Care & control is usually granted to the mother, in which child lives together with the mother, so that she is able to take care of the child's daily needs.

sorry you have to go through this. good luck.

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Postby cpcpcp » Sat, 03 May 2014 7:04 pm

I want the care & control of the child at all price that I could afford but it seems it's very difficult since I am not mother. So in this case I have to pay both child & spousal support right? I mean I don't have a choice isn't it.

Thanks for the suggest that getting a better deal without involvement of court & laywers, but she and her parents are mad at me we couldn't discuss anything, in this case what should I do? Just ask my lawyer to negotiate with their lawyer?

PNGMK wrote:Are you expecting to pay child support only or spousal support as well?

However IME CS is highly variable. If you can get away with 10% of your income you've done well but I've heard others paying close to 50%. It does depend on your ex wife's ability to provide as well as the expected costs of rasiing the child.

HINT: try to settle and negotiate this out of court - you can do so I believe (I did) with a counseller from the FC. You have a much better chance of a reasonable settlement. ALSO try to avoid having the amount indexed or linked to your income (i.e. avoid a % - try to settle on an exact amount of $ per month) - that way in 10 years when your income is doubled - you're paying a lot less as a % of your income.

As a guideline the CS rates in Australia are 17% pre tax income for the first child, 27% for two etc.... until the supporting parent is so crippled they can never start again - a lot of men suicide out at that point.

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Postby cpcpcp » Sat, 03 May 2014 7:12 pm

Thanks for the advice. I think there might be a chance that we could have an agreement on split of cash/assets BUT we have no idea how much child & spouse support should I pay per month. So this part have to involve lawyers is it? Thanks a lot again, I will try to reduce involvement of lawyers.

JR8 wrote:My advice would be to aim for:

- both accept that it's better to get it over with
- try and have some form of amicable desire to settle matters
- try and gauge and draw up a reasonable/equitable split of income/assets.

I would very much advise against instructing lawyers and going 'adversarial'. It is just dirty to the point of being evil and exploitative, hideously painful, and the lawyers drag it out in a made-up pi$$ing contest, down to starting WW3 over 'visitation rights for the pet hamster', ... and it goes on for as long as you can afford that at $500/hr.

It's way better, if you can do it, to leave with a bit of dignity intact and something left in your wallet.

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Postby PNGMK » Sat, 03 May 2014 10:02 pm

Unless your ex wife is found in a brothel in Geylang with a John between her legs and a needle in her arm you're not getting C&C in Singapore (and those words came straight from the mouth of a highly esteemed Singapore lawyer). That's just how it is in this conservative country - so get over that mentally and do it now. Begin working on being a partner to your ex partner for the sake of the child. Sucks but that's it.

Futhermore now that Singapore is a member of the Hague convention you need to forget about abducting the child and absconding to another country - unless it is a non-Hague convention country and will never be one. Even then you still face intepol issues as they will have you on record and you're ability to travel will be constrained.

Forget about swapping cash and assets for the kid. The FC in Singapore (rightly) considers child access/custody and property to be separate matters.

So what's your choices?

1. Commit suicide, leaves your kid fatherless and your ex wins. Not recommended.
2. Forget the kid and leave Singapore (if you've not bonded I recommend this but it means being a deadbeat dad for the rest of your days).
3. Be an arsehole and never get on with your ex and fight every freaking day and spend every penny on lawyers and still not get what you want.
4. Take a deep breath, trust in the almighty (insert diety of your choosing) and try to calm down. Build a bridge with your ex by paying your obligations, honoring the court agreement on access (and be consistent about it) and work your ass off at building a new life.

There's no other way mate. No other way. Nada.

For child support (only) the calculation is really just food,clothes,schooling,books,maid and medical. Anything else your ex throws up is BS. Aim for about $1000 to $2000 a month if you don't have ridiculous school fees.

For spousal support (you didn't answer this) the sky is the limit but as your ex is working you have a pretty good chance of arguing that she is capable of supporting herself.

Consider seeing a counselor to talk it out. Don't talk it out with your mates... they know nothing and their advice comes from their own issues.

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Postby PNGMK » Sat, 03 May 2014 10:09 pm

To answer your procedural questions:

1. Depending on the hurry you're in - wait for her to sue you for support and maintenance. Represent yourself and you will almost certainly be appointed a counsellor to work it through.

2. If you're in a hurry - you need a lawyer to file the various writs and this is out of my ability to answer.

Frankly what I would do now is begin paying her something (i.e. $1000 to $2000 a month). Do it via transfer so there's a record. This sets a pattern so that when you do end up in court... you can show that you're a reasonable person and the amount hopefully will be maintained. Otherwise you come across as a dead beat and you may get whacked. TRY to get reasonable access to the child on the same basis. Once a week (not overnight if the child is young). Return the child on time as agreed. Don't be a threat to your ex - you don't want a PPO dropped on you.

3. Maintenance of an ex wife is not required in Syariah court. In the civil court is is not assumed either - esp if your ex is working and has a similar salary level.

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Postby JR8 » Sat, 03 May 2014 10:26 pm

re: nanana
It varies so widely, it is hard to summarise, or predict. For example there is a huge difference, even in the US, between western/southern ‘Spanish law’ states [‘you’re giving up half, what ever the circumstances’], and English law East Coast states, which is more based upon just needs and reasonableness.
A court will look at needs (and the price thereof). If you have a child, the cost of maintenance will be calculated. If you are rich and your wife is from the ghetto, if you’ve been married 20 years, then she has a right to expect the lifestyle you drew her into to be maintained. If you were married 2 years that might not apply.
Forget what her parents are feeling and doing. Focus on your, her, the child.
The court will likely favour the mother, unless you can somehow prove that she is deficient as a mother. This just seems to be how the current-day judicial system regards these matters.

---
You might not have any chance of ‘care and control’ of your daughter, even at ‘any price’. There is no virtue hosing money up against a wall if it’s not going to happen.

What can you do? You could do nothing. You could separate, and then just ignore her. Let her do the leg-work. Let her start any action. It is often cheaper to provide a defence than create an attack, since the battle-field has been pre-defined for you. Do not be alarmed how dirty this might get, it is a terrible situation, and lawyers will only make it far worse.

---
If you can settle, or have a hope that you might, you go to ‘mediation’. This usually means that you both beforehand have been briefed and scripted by your own lawyers. You then visit a mediator (who is often ANOTHER lawyer), and you negotiate a settlement.
- You go in, and describe the circumstances, your income, assets, and so on
- She goes in and does the same
- You go back in, and the lawyer says ‘well she says xyz and she wants abc’. You negotiate. This goes on to and fro, meanwhile he’s on US$500/hr.
- This goes on until you have an outline negotiated settlement, that you later sign, and is accepted by court as a part, parallel, to your decree nisi proceedings.
---

It’s a complex subject, especially with a child involved. The law changes too, and we have no idea what jurisdiction any divorce might fall under, so this is generalities.

My best advice would be to seek a specific divorce forum, for your overall circumstances, on the internet, I think you might be surprised how many there are. There you will meet others, in/mid/through the process, and together you might find a self-supporting buddy-network. I think it helps to feel that you are not alone and somewhat better informed.

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Re: Is it possible to get the care & control of our chil

Postby aster » Sun, 04 May 2014 2:50 am

cpcpcp wrote:Now she and her parents are very angry with me, it is not possible to us to 'discuss anything peacefully'
[/quote]

Did anything drastic happen that lead to this situation? Normally when things go downhill gradually and both of you are self-sufficient it should be possible to work out an amicable solution without this sudden hostility.

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Postby cpcpcp » Sun, 04 May 2014 6:08 pm

Thanks for the advices. Personally if I were a mother who wants to marry again, I may choose not to have the care & control of the child I guess, that's why I'd like to propose swap my cash/property with the child's custody. However, I am ready to take the 4th option you suggested.

In fact I am not as angry as before and now I don't think any party is wrong, it's just we are not suitable/fit for each other. The mistake I made is that I should start taking actions before marriage or before having the child.

PNGMK wrote:Unless your ex wife is found in a brothel in Geylang with a John between her legs and a needle in her arm you're not getting C&C in Singapore (and those words came straight from the mouth of a highly esteemed Singapore lawyer). That's just how it is in this conservative country - so get over that mentally and do it now. Begin working on being a partner to your ex partner for the sake of the child. Sucks but that's it.

Futhermore now that Singapore is a member of the Hague convention you need to forget about abducting the child and absconding to another country - unless it is a non-Hague convention country and will never be one. Even then you still face intepol issues as they will have you on record and you're ability to travel will be constrained.

Forget about swapping cash and assets for the kid. The FC in Singapore (rightly) considers child access/custody and property to be separate matters.

So what's your choices?

1. Commit suicide, leaves your kid fatherless and your ex wins. Not recommended.
2. Forget the kid and leave Singapore (if you've not bonded I recommend this but it means being a deadbeat dad for the rest of your days).
3. Be an arsehole and never get on with your ex and fight every freaking day and spend every penny on lawyers and still not get what you want.
4. Take a deep breath, trust in the almighty (insert diety of your choosing) and try to calm down. Build a bridge with your ex by paying your obligations, honoring the court agreement on access (and be consistent about it) and work your ass off at building a new life.

There's no other way mate. No other way. Nada.

For child support (only) the calculation is really just food,clothes,schooling,books,maid and medical. Anything else your ex throws up is BS. Aim for about $1000 to $2000 a month if you don't have ridiculous school fees.

For spousal support (you didn't answer this) the sky is the limit but as your ex is working you have a pretty good chance of arguing that she is capable of supporting herself.

Consider seeing a counselor to talk it out. Don't talk it out with your mates... they know nothing and their advice comes from their own issues.
Last edited by cpcpcp on Sun, 04 May 2014 6:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Is it possible to get the care & control of our chil

Postby cpcpcp » Sun, 04 May 2014 6:11 pm

She and her mother's personality are very strong and dominating but my personality is soft/quiet, but I am really fed up with her family culture and I insist to divorce but they refuse, that's why they are so angry with me.

aster wrote:
cpcpcp wrote:Now she and her parents are very angry with me, it is not possible to us to 'discuss anything peacefully'


Did anything drastic happen that lead to this situation? Normally when things go downhill gradually and both of you are self-sufficient it should be possible to work out an amicable solution without this sudden hostility.[/quote]

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Postby nanana » Mon, 05 May 2014 9:36 am

sounds to me you have already found someone else. everything and anything else is just an excuse to get out of the marriage...

and you are so wrong about women to give up on care/control of their children in order to be remarried again. what century are you living in? that is totally an insult to a mother's love for the child.

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Postby Beeroclock » Mon, 05 May 2014 10:23 am

cpcpcp wrote:Thanks for the advices. Personally if I were a mother who wants to marry again, I may choose not to have the care & control of the child I guess, that's why I'd like to propose swap my cash/property with the child's custody. However, I am ready to take the 4th option you suggested.


nanana wrote:and you are so wrong about women to give up on care/control of their children in order to be remarried again. what century are you living in? that is totally an insult to a mother's love for the child.


nanana, i didn't think OP is generalizing about women in general and a mother's love for the child. As I read, he is just saying, in a polite way, that his wife might like to have this option/choice, note the words "if ... I may choose ... I guess ... that's why I'd like to propose " ... Indeed she might only need a fraction of a second to say No. So, personally i think your response above seems a bit off.

Regarding the "what century are we living in ?" Perhaps a can of worms opening here, but IMHO actually the issue that needs addressing/updating is the father's rights and fair treatment in a divorce. If society is serious about equality and respecting BOTH PARENTS' love for the child.


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