Biological grandparents had no right to visitation following termination of their son's parental rights and adoption by the child's stepfather. In re Marriage of Soergel, 154 W (2d) 564, 453 NW (2d) 624 (1990).
The visitation petition of a custodial parent's widow did not meet the criteria of sub. (1) where, prior to the custodial parent's death the non-custodial parent had filed a motion to revise custody; s. 880.155 governs visitation in the event of a parent's death. In re Marriage of Cox v. Williams, 177 W (2d) 433, 502 NW (2d) 128 (1993).
A paternity case where the court has retained postjudgment authority to enforce the judgment constitutes an underlying action under which a petition for grandparent visitation may be brought. Paternity of Nastassja L.H.-J., 181 W (2d) 666, 512 NW (2d) 189 (Ct. App. 1993).
An existing underlying action affecting the family does not alone provide standing to petition under this section. The underlying action must threaten the integrity of a family unit. An action under this section does not apply to intact families. Because the father figure in a household was not the biological or adoptive father of one of the children did not mean the family was not intact. Marquardt v. Hegemann-Glascock, 190 W (2d) 447, 526 NW (2d) 834 (Ct. App. 1994).
This section does not apply outside the dissolution of a marriage, but it does not preempt the consideration of visitation in circumstances not subject to the statute. A circuit court may consider visitation by a non-parent outside a marriage dissolution situation in the best interests of the child if the non-parent petitioner demonstrates a parent-like relationship with the child and shows a significant triggering event such as substantial interference with that relationship. Custody of H.S.H-K, 193 W (2d) 649, 533 NW (2d) 419 (1995).
Grandparent Visitation Rights. Rothstein. Wis. Law. Nov. 1992.
The Effect of C.G.F. and Section 48.925 on Grandparental Visitation Petitions. Hughes. Wis. Law. Nov. 1992.
Whenever the court approves a stipulation for child support under s. 767.10
, enters a judgment of annulment, divorce or legal separation, or enters an order or a judgment in an action under s. 767.02 (1) (f)
, the court shall do all of the following:
Order either or both parents to pay an amount reasonable or necessary to fulfill a duty to support a child. The support amount may be expressed as a percentage of parental income or as a fixed sum, or as a combination of both in the alternative by requiring payment of the greater or lesser of either a percentage of parental income or a fixed sum.
Ensure that the parties have stipulated which party, if either is eligible, will claim each child as an exemption for federal income tax purposes under 26 USC 151
(c) (1) (B), or as an exemption for state income tax purposes under s. 71.07 (8) (b)
or under the laws of another state. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement about the tax exemption for each child, the court shall make the decision in accordance with state and federal tax laws. In making its decision, the court shall consider whether the parent who is assigned responsibility for the child's health care expenses under sub. (4m)
is covered under a health insurance policy or plan, including a self-insured plan, that is not subject to s. 632.897 (10)
and that conditions coverage of a dependent child on whether the child is claimed by the insured parent as an exemption for purposes of federal or state income taxes.
In determining child support payments, the court may consider all relevant financial information or other information relevant to the parent's earning capacity, including information reported to the department, or the county child and spousal support agency, under s. 49.22 (2m)
Except as provided in sub. (1m)
, the court shall determine child support payments by using the percentage standard established by the department under s. 49.22 (9)
Upon request by a party, the court may modify the amount of child support payments determined under sub. (1j)
if, after considering the following factors, the court finds by the greater weight of the credible evidence that use of the percentage standard is unfair to the child or to any of the parties:
The needs of each party in order to support himself or herself at a level equal to or greater than that established under 42 USC 9902
The needs of any person, other than the child, whom either party is legally obligated to support.
The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not ended in annulment, divorce or legal separation.
The desirability that the custodian remain in the home as a full-time parent.
The cost of day care if the custodian works outside the home, or the value of custodial services performed by the custodian if the custodian remains in the home.
The award of substantial periods of physical placement to both parents.
Extraordinary travel expenses incurred in exercising the right to periods of physical placement under s. 767.24
The physical, mental and emotional health needs of the child, including any costs for health insurance as provided for under sub. (4m)
The earning capacity of each parent, based on each parent's education, training and work experience and the availability of work in or near the parent's community.
Any other factors which the court in each case determines are relevant.
If the court finds under sub. (1m)
that use of the percentage standard is unfair to the child or the requesting party, the court shall state in writing or on the record the amount of support that would be required by using the percentage standard, the amount by which the court's order deviates from that amount, its reasons for finding that use of the percentage standard is unfair to the child or the party, its reasons for the amount of the modification and the basis for the modification.
The court may protect and promote the best interests of the minor children by setting aside a portion of the child support which either party is ordered to pay in a separate fund or trust for the support, education and welfare of such children.
Violation of physical placement rights by the custodial parent does not constitute reason for failure to meet child support obligations.
The court shall order either party or both to pay for the support of any child of the parties who is less than 19 years old and is pursuing an accredited course of instruction leading to the acquisition of a high school diploma or its equivalent.
In this subsection, "health insurance" does not include medical assistance provided under subch. IV of ch. 49
In addition to ordering child support for a child under sub. (1)
, the court shall specifically assign responsibility for and direct the manner of payment of the child's health care expenses. In assigning responsibility for a child's health care expenses, the court shall consider whether a child is covered under a parent's health insurance policy or plan at the time the court approves a stipulation for child support under s. 767.10
, enters a judgment of annulment, divorce or legal separation, or enters an order or a judgment in an action under s. 767.02 (1) (f)
, the availability of health insurance to each parent through an employer or other organization, the extent of coverage available to a child and the costs to the parent for the coverage of the child. A parent may be required to initiate or continue health care insurance coverage for a child under this subsection. If a parent is required to do so, he or she shall provide copies of necessary program or policy identification to the custodial parent and is liable for any health care costs for which he or she receives direct payment from an insurer. This subsection shall not be construed to limit the authority of the court to enter or modify support orders containing provisions for payment of medical expenses, medical costs, or insurance premiums which are in addition to and not inconsistent with this subsection.
In directing the manner of payment of a child's health care expenses, the court may order that payment, including payment for health insurance premiums, be withheld from income and sent to the appropriate health care insurer, provider or plan, as provided in s. 767.265 (3h)
, or sent to the clerk of court or support collection designee, whichever is appropriate, for disbursement to the person for whom the payment has been awarded if that person is not a health care insurer, provider or plan. If the court orders income withholding and assignment for the payment of health care expenses, the court shall send notice of assignment in the manner provided under s. 767.265 (2r)
and may include the notice of assignment under this subdivision with a notice of assignment under s. 767.265
. The clerk of court shall keep a record of all moneys received and disbursed by the clerk for health care expenses that are directed to be paid to the clerk and the support collection designee shall keep a record of all moneys received and disbursed by the support collection designee for health care expenses that are directed to be paid to the support collection designee.
If the court orders a parent to initiate or continue health insurance coverage for a child under a health insurance policy that is available to the parent through an employer or other organization but the court does not specify the manner in which payment of the health insurance premiums shall be made, the clerk of court may provide notice of assignment in the manner provided under s. 767.265 (2r)
for the withholding from income of the amount necessary to pay the health insurance premiums. The notice of assignment under this subdivision may be sent with or included as part of any other notice of assignment under s. 767.265
, if appropriate. A person who receives notice of assignment under this subdivision shall send the withheld health insurance premiums to the appropriate health care insurer, provider or plan, as provided in s. 767.265 (3h)
If the court orders a parent to provide coverage of the health care expenses of the parent's child and the parent is eligible for family coverage of health care expenses under a health benefit plan that is provided by an employer on an insured or on a self-insured basis, the employer shall do all of the following:
Permit the parent to obtain family coverage of health care expenses for the child, if eligible for coverage, without regard to any enrollment period or waiting period restrictions that may apply.
Provide family coverage of health care expenses for the child, if eligible for coverage, upon application by the parent, the child's other parent, the department or the county designee under s. 59.53 (5)
NOTE: Subd. 2. is shown as affected by two acts of the 1995 legislature and as merged by the revisor under s. 13.93 (2) (c).
After the child has coverage under the employer's health benefit plan, and as long as the parent is eligible for family coverage under the employer's health benefit plan, continue to provide coverage for the child unless the employer receives satisfactory written evidence that the court order is no longer in effect or that the child has coverage of health care expenses under another health insurance policy or health benefit plan that provides comparable coverage of health care expenses.
If a parent who has been ordered by a court to provide coverage of the health care expenses of a child who is eligible for medical assistance under subch. IV of ch. 49
receives payment from a 3rd party for the cost of services provided to the child but does not pay the health care provider for the services or reimburse the department or any other person who paid for the services on behalf of the child, the department may obtain a judgment against the parent for the amount of the 3rd party payment.
Liability for past support shall be limited to the period after the birth of the child.
A party ordered to pay child support under this section shall pay simple interest at the rate of 1.5% per month on any amount unpaid, commencing the first day of the 2nd month after the month in which the amount was due. Interest under this subsection is in lieu of interest computed under s. 807.01 (4)
, 814.04 (4)
or 815.05 (8)
and is paid to the clerk of court or support collection designee under s. 767.29
. Except as provided in s. 767.29 (1m)
, the clerk of court or support collection designee, whichever is appropriate, shall apply all payments received for child support as follows:
First, to payment of child support due within the calendar month during which the payment is withheld from income under s. 767.265
or under similar laws of another state. If payment is not made through income withholding, the clerk or support collection designee, whichever is appropriate, shall first apply child support payments received to payment of child support due within the calendar month during which the payment is received.
Second, to payment of unpaid child support due before the payment is received.
Third, to payment of interest accruing on unpaid child support.
An order of joint legal custody under s. 767.24
does not affect the amount of child support ordered.
History: 1971 c. 157
; 1977 c. 29
; 1979 c. 32
, 92 (4)
; 1979 c. 196
; Stats. 1979 s. 767.25; 1981 c. 20
; 1983 a. 27
; 1985 a. 29
; 1987 a. 27
; 1989 a. 31
; 1991 a. 39
; 1993 a. 481
; 1995 a. 27
, 9126 (19)
; 1995 a. 201
; s. 13.93 (2) (c).
A provision in a judgment as to education of children past the age of majority, inserted pursuant to stipulation of the parties, cannot later be challenged and can be enforced by contempt proceedings. Bliwas v. Bliwas, 47 W (2d) 635, 178 NW (2d) 35.
Where parents each own 1/2 interest in future proceeds of real estate and state contributes to child support, court may order only noncustodial parent to pay child support in form of accumulating real estate lien in favor of state. State ex rel. v. Reible, 91 W (2d) 394, 283 NW (2d) 427 (Ct. App. 1979).
Trial court abused its discretion by setting child support payments without considering needs of the children or father's ability to pay. Edwards v. Edwards, 97 W (2d) 111, 293 NW (2d) 160 (1980).
Sub. (4) has retroactive effect. Behnke v. Behnke, 103 W (2d) 449, 309 NW (2d) 21 (Ct. App. 1981).
Personal injury damage award to noncustodial spouse can be considered as change of circumstances justifying increased support. Sommer v. Sommer, 108 W (2d) 586, 323 NW (2d) 144 (Ct. App. 1982).
Sub. (6) imposes interest on arrearages existing on July 2, 1983, as well as on those accruing afterward. Marriage of Greenwood v. Greenwood, 129 W (2d) 388, 385 NW (2d) 213 (Ct. App. 1986).
Federal Supplemental Security Income may not be considered economic resource for purposes of computing child support obligation; however, seek-work order may be appropriate. Marriage of Langlois v. Langlois, 150 W (2d) 101, 441 NW (2d) 286 (Ct. App. 1989).
Educational grants and loans, AFDC, and other child support are not economic resources for purposes of computing child support obligation. Marriage of Thibadeau v. Thibadeau, 150 W (2d) 109, 441 NW (2d) 281 (Ct. App. 1989).
See note to 767.32, citing Marriage of Kuchenbecker v. Schultz, 151 W (2d) 868, 447 NW (2d) 80 (Ct. App. 1989).
On request for modification under (1m), it was error for trial court to consider post-high school educational expenses in setting support; consideration of expenses incurred by child as adult is error. In re Marriage of Resong v. Vier, 157 W (2d) 382, 459 NW (2d) 591 (Ct. App. 1990).
Divorce stipulation waiving or setting ceiling on child support and preventing modification is against public policy and will not be enforced. In re Marriage of Ondrasek v. Tenneson, 158 W (2d) 690, 462 NW (2d) 915 (Ct. App. 1990).
Trial court's use of computer program to analyze financial evidence approved. In re Marriage of Bisone v. Bisone, 165 W (2d) 114, 477 NW (2d) 59 (Ct. App. 1991).
Stepparent has no legal obligation to support a stepchild; under appropriate circumstances the theory of equitable estoppel may apply to cases involving child support. In re Marriage of Ulrich v. Cornell, 168 W (2d) 792, 484 NW (2d) 546 (1992).
In joint legal custody situation the parent with primary physical custody may be ordered to pay child support. In re Marriage of Matz v. Matz, 166 W (2d) 326, 479 NW (2d) 245 (Ct. App. 1991).
The absence of a mortgage obligation is relevant to the assessment of a party's economic circumstances, but does not translate into imputed income under the applicable administrative rule. In Marriage of Zimmerman v. Zimmerman, 169 W (2d) 516, 485 NW (2d) 294 (Ct. App. 1992).
A support order against actual AFDC grants is prohibited by Thibadeau, but an order against earned income of one who also receives AFDC is not. In Support of B., L., T. & K. 171 W (2d) 617, 492 NW (2d) 350 (Ct. App. 1992).
No matter how corporate income is labeled, a family court may pierce the corporate shield if it is convinced the obligor's intent is to avoid financial obligations. In re Marriage of Evjen v. Evjen, 171 W (2d) 677, 492 NW (2d) 360 (Ct. App. 1992).
Parties' extrajudicial agreement that child support payments be discontinued was enforceable via the doctrine of equitable estoppel. Harms v. Harms, 174 W (2d) 780, 498 NW (2d) 229 (1993).
Discussion of the "serial family payer" rule adopted under the percentage standards referred to in sub. (1). Brown v. Brown, 177 W (2d) 512, 503 NW (2d) 280 (Ct. App. 1993).
The mandatory percentage standards for determining support do not allow for deferred payments. Kelly v. Hougham, 178 W (2d) 546, 504 NW (2d) 440 (Ct. App. 1993).
An AFDC recipient assigns all rights to child support payments to the state; as such the payments may not be held in trust for the child under sub. (2). Paternity of Lachelle A.C. 180 W (2d) 708, 510 NW (2d) 718 (Ct. App. 1993).
A lump sum separation benefit received upon termination of employment was properly considered income subject to the percentage standards for support. Gohde v. Gohde, 181 W (2d) 770, 512 NW (2d) 199 (Ct. App. 1993).
In deciding not to apply the percentage standard, the court erred when it compared the parties available incomes after deducting the percentage amount from the payor's income but failing to consider the assumed contribution of the same percentage by the payee. Kjelstrum v. Kjelstrum, 181 W (2d) 973, 512 NW (2d) 264 (Ct. App. 1994).
A trial court could may not set child support at zero, convert post-divorce income to marital property and order that income to be held in trust to be distributed to the child when AFDC benefits ended. Luna v. Luna, 183 W (2d) 20, 515 NW (2d) 480 (Ct. App. 1994).
Parties are free to contract in a settlement agreement that the primary custodian will not have spending discretion over child support if the interests of the children and custodial parent are protected. Jacquart v. Jacquart, 183 W (2d) 372, 515 NW (2d) 539 (Ct. App. 1994).
An asset and its income stream may not be counted both as an asset in the property division and as part of the payor's income from which support is paid. Maley v. Maley, 186 W (2d) 125, 519 NW (2d) 717 (Ct. App. 1994).
Trust income which is income to the beneficiary under federal tax law is subject to a child support order regardless of whether a distribution is made to the beneficiary. Grohmann v. Grohmann, 189 W (2d) 532, 525 NW (2d) 261 (1995).
A minimum fixed child support amount, rather than the percentage standard, based on the payor's "potential income" was appropriate where the court found the payor had a substantial potential to manipulate the amount of support. Doerr v. Doerr, 189 W (2d) 112, 525 NW (2d) 745 (Ct. App. 1994).
The trial court may consider the amount of time a child is placed with the paying parent and the parent's second family in setting support. Molstad v. Molstad, 193 W (2d) 602, 535 NW (2d) 63 (Ct. App. 1995).
A court may revise a judgment to create a trust under sub. (2), including a trust funded by child support arrearages, when it is necessary for the best interests of the child. Cameron v. Cameron, 197 W (2d) 618, 541 NW (2d) 164 (Ct. App. 1995).
The percentage standards may be used to generate future as well as present support. Paternity of Tukker M.O., 199 W (2d) 186, 544 NW (2d) 417 (1996).
The percentage standards presumptively apply in the case of a high income payee absent the payer's showing of unfairness by the greater weight of the credible evidence. Luciani v. Montemurro-Luciani, 199 W (2d) 280, 544 NW (2d) 561 (1996).
Maley distinguished. In certain cases an asset may be divided in the property division and its income stream considered as income in determining child support. Cook v. Cook, 201 W (2d) 72, 547 NW (2d) 817 (Ct. App. 1996).
A court may consider earning capacity rather than actual earnings in determining child support and maintenance if it find's a spouse's job choice voluntary and unreasonable. Sellers v. Sellers, 201 W (2d) 578, 549 NW (2d) 481 (Ct. App. 1996).