I just found out that the mother of my child filed for Chapter 7 a few months ago. She did all of this during the settlement of our child support case. The bankruptcy case just closed a few weeks ago. She does not know that I know.
Because bankruptcy records are public (PACER) and my lawyer is thorough, I've been able to see exactly how much her income and expenses are. On the Chapter 7 Schedule J document she indicated child expenses are about $250/month". I send her $700 per month and I pay for health insurance $220/month (So total = $920/month). There is a detailed accounting of her spending in the papers. She did not report the following:
1) almost $2000 I sent to her before she filed for bankruptcy.
2) She also did not report recent income of several thousand dollars for birth costs that I sent to her and she did not report the $700 that I send her every month. She knew that she would soon be receiving this money before her creditors/341 meeting and she began receiving it before her debt ($100,000) was completely and officially discharged by the court.
3) Day care costs which she was paying before filing bankruptcy, are about $700/month. This amount is not in her petition (Part of the money I send to her is for day care...I'm thinking gift income from a relative/friend payed for day care and she chose not to report it but I don't know).
I don't know whether she did this intentionally or not. But ignorance of the law is no excuse and I think this may constitute perjury. Some of the other numbers seem questionable, too. Anyway, this information obviously makes me think about 1) going to court to reduce my child support and 2) possibly getting in touch with the FBI to report fraud.
Based on her sworn financial statements to the court, I am paying MUCH more than my fair share.
Here is the VERY difficult part. She does a great job of taking care of my son whom I love dearly. And we get along fairly well. I know going through bankruptcy can be an emotionally wrenching experienced. If I act against her, it could affect my son. (She would not hurt him intentionally. But if she becomes emotionally ill, it will affect him).
Any thoughts on what I should do? I don't think there are any "winners" regardless...This is tough for me financially and, I'm guessing, tough for her emotionally.
P.S. On Schedule I she reported $0 for "Alimony, maintenance or support payments payable to the debtor for the debtor's use or that of dependents listed above.