On behalf of Lake Toback Attorneys
The ongoing saga of actor Charlie Sheen and his former wife, Brooke Mueller, may be familiar to many Illinois residents. The celebrity couple, who have four-year-old twin sons, divorced in February 2011. At that time, Sheen agreed to give Mueller a $2 million cash settlement. He also agreed to make monthly child support payments of $55,000, to pay the boys’ education and medical expenses, and to make mortgage payments on the home where Mueller lived with the boys. Now, after Mueller’s recent drug relapse, Sheen is asking that his child support obligation be reduced to zero.
Mueller entered drug rehab in early May. At that time, social workers removed the boys from Mueller’s home and placed them with Sheen’s first wife, actress Denise Richards, with whom he has two daughters. Sheen also pays Richards $55,000 per month for child support.
In a court filing in early July, Sheen said that while he makes nearly $740,000 a month in income, he does not believe he should have to continue making child support payments to Mueller. Sheen’s court filing makes clear that his reason for requesting a modification is not due to an inability to pay. Rather, Sheen says that application of the standard income formula in his case would result in a significant windfall to Mueller, who has no monthly expenses related to the care of her sons because they are no longer in her custody.
While Sheen’s case may not be the typical child support dispute, it illustrates some of the unique factors that can complicate child support calculations. In Illinois, child support is calculated using a formula based on the parties’ income. The otherwise straightforward guidelines can become complex when applied to high wage earners or in cases like Sheen’s involving special circumstances. When dealing with complex child support matters, it is prudent to seek the advice of a qualified family law attorney.
Source: NY Daily News, “Charlie Sheen makes legal move to stop paying ex Brooke Mueller $55K a month in child support“, Nancy Dillon, July 11, 2013
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Actor Charlie Sheen seeks child support modification