Tuesday, December 29, 2009

AB.com Rewind - How Much Child Support Is Too Much Child Support?!?

[Editor's Note: Eldrick Woods, take note.]

Some men say "it's cheaper to keep her" when it comes to divorce. I always say, "it's even cheaper to not get her in the first place", but that's just me. Let's face it, child and spousal support are the ultimate Grand Hu$tle, especially if you're rich and famous. It's much cheaper to simply get yourself fixed, and not bother getting married, especially if you still wanna eff' around like most of these guys do.

I'm not necessarily bringing up this topic in light of the recent Nas/Kelis episode, it's something that's been on my mind for awhile. I think we can all agree that it's right and just for a man to take care of his kids financially when a marriage dissolves. Likewise, it's fair for a man to assist his wife financially in getting back on her feet, especially if she's stopped working to care for children. Being a stay-at-home mom is the toughest job evar. And that's the truth, Ruth.

But c'mon, how much child support is too much child support? Isn't there a limit?
A judge has ordered Nas to pay Kelis nearly $40,000 in monthly support for the near future, a day after the "Milkshake" singer gave birth to the divorcing couple's baby boy. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Louis Meisinger issued the order at a Thursday hearing. Neither Nas, whose full name is Nasir Jones, nor Kelis, whose full name is Kelis Rogers, attended Thursday's hearing.

Rogers will receive $30,471 in spousal support per month; the couple's son will receive $9,027, according to the court records. Rogers gave birth to the boy, named Knight, at a New York hospital Wednesday. The 29-year-old filed for divorce from the rapper in April. The couple was married in July 2003.

The two have been sparring over support payments for several months, with Rogers contending that Jones hasn't paid many of the costs of her pregnancy and her expenses. His attorney, Mark Vincent Kaplan, told the judge that the rapper has paid $30,000 in expenses and the former couple's health insurance has been maintained.
Kaplan proposed paying Rogers a one-time payment of $20,000 until the judge could settle on an appropriate spousal and child support amount at a later hearing.

Kaplan said Jones arrived at the hospital about five minutes before his son was born. Nguyen said Rogers' mother and sister were in the hospital room for the birth.

Meisinger rejected that offer, saying more money per month would be needed to accommodate Rogers' lifestyle and was warranted based on income declarations filed with the court. The judge also ordered Jones to pay $45,000 to pay Rogers' attorney fees and for a forensic accountant.

Wasser said Kelis is trying to secure a new record deal and hopes to begin recording new music soon. She said Rogers' income has dipped in recent months.
I mean, c'mon, where do you draw the line here? I understand that spousal/child support are supposed to allow a wife and child to maintain a similar standard of living to what they have become accustomed to, but how old is that damn baby? 7-8 days old? What exactly is that child accustomed to already that needs to be "maintained"? 50 Cent, who is far richer than Nas could ever dream of, only pays about $6k in support a month. Russell Simmons pays $40k for 2 kids. Diddy allegedly pays about $100k/month, but he has more kids than Shawn Kemp an orphanage. Where's the fairness?

I'll go ahead and say it, whether it's $40k or $55k (numbers thrown out there have varied widely), it's too damn much for a woman with one freakin' child. Especially a newborn. How many I Been Had!!! Baby Polos can you actually buy in a single month? Breast milk is free. Diapers cost a grip, but they are still just Huggies. Your most expensive college is $40k/year. Where exactly is $40k/month actually going, besides fattening up Kelis' wardrobe?

At what point does the woman need to get another job to maintain her own lifestyle? How many Kelis songs can you name? "MilkShake". "I Hate You So Much Right Now". Uhhmmmm.... "Milkshake". That's about it. Nas, on the other hand, has a nearly 20 year discography. Why should she be entitled to continue to reap the benefits of this man's lyrical prowess? Funny, but I don't recall her listed in the credits for Illmatic. Did she ghostwrite "Ether"? Why is she entitled to such an exorbitant fee?

I don't agree with everything Red & Meth say in this very sexist clip, but I do agree, the money she's been awarded is simply too damn much.

Part II.

Let's be honest, $500k/year in support is gonna wreck any man financially. And for what reason? There's no way in the world Nas (who clearly has just as bad luck picking lawyers as he does mates) is gonna be able to pay this. The man's best days have long since passed, and in today's ringtone industry, there's no way he can keep up with these payments. This will predictably strain any relationship, including the one he'll have with his child. Who, besides Kelis and her next boyfriend who'll love spending that $40k/month, actually benefits from this?

Sorry ya'll, this is just wrong, wrong, wrong.

Question: How much child support is too damn much child support? Is this case simply indicative of the child support system? How does this get fixed?

Nas ordered to make $40K monthly payments to Kelis [AP]

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