Legal Question in Family Law in California

I have physical custody of my 8 yr old son. His Dad keeps several of his clothes, sometimes returns some of them but for most part I keep sending clothes and dont get all back. I dont mind if he keeps an emergency set, like 1 pr pants, shirt, shorts etc. But he thinks he's entitled to have several of his clothes at his house. If I dont keep sending clothes (this last time I didnt send much because he had some already that was not returned) then he is threatening to go buy clothes and deduct from cp. He goes for 1 1/2 night (bk at 8:30pm) and 1 overnight during wk and every other weeknd. Can you tell me what the law says? Things are starting to get heated.

Thank you,


Asked on 9/18/10, 7:50 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Patrick McCrary Law Office Of Patrick L. McCrary

The law does not say specifically, but if you bought the clothes for you child, the clothes are your property not his. Unfortunately, you could buy a lot of clothes for the cost of getting a judge to make a decision, which would go in your favor. If you do not have a wage assignment, you should get a wage assignment so that he cannot make a deduction, then send the child wiht the clothes that he is wearing. That would be the practical solution. Good Luck, Pat McCrary

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Answered on 9/23/10, 8:00 am

Timothy McCormick Libris Solutions - Dispute Resolution Services

It sounded to me like he is threatening to take the cost of clothes out of Community Property, not child support. That is what you meant by CP right? That implies a couple of things, first, that this is a fairly recent split, and second, that you do not have a property division. If those things are correct, your husband is right and you are wrong. He is entitled to half the kids clothes, just as he is entitled to half of everything else bought with community property. If you refuse to provide him with the clothes, he has the right to go out and buy clothes with his separate property income and then charge the community. It doesn't matter how much time the child spends where. So to put an end to this, you need to divide up the clothes and things for the child reasonably. Then, all you have to do is send the child in one set of clothes he is wearing and he will come back wearing a set of clothes. End of issue. Well until you start fighting over you sending nicer clothes than you get back, but that's for your therapist, not us lawyers (by which I mean you two really need to get come coparenting help, not legal help, to deal with this kind of thing in the long run).

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Answered on 9/23/10, 1:56 pm

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