Clay v. Clay
In Clay v. Clay, 208 Ariz. 200, 92 P.3d 426 (App. 2004), the Court analyzed 26 of the Guidelines to determine whether the mother was required to refund the father for an overpayment of child support.
There, the father, a disabled non-custodial parent, was ordered to pay arrearages in addition to his monthly support obligation. Id. at 201, P 2, 92 P.3d at 427.
The father's current child support obligation was paid with his SSDI benefits, and a check was issued to the mother to pay for the child support arrearages. Id. at PP 2-3.
After accounting for the check, the trial court concluded that the father had overpaid his child support obligation and ordered the mother to reimburse the father for the overage. Id. at P 3.
The Court held that although "the parent is entitled to a credit toward his/her child support obligations equal to the dependency benefits," the trial court improperly ordered the mother to reimburse the father because the SSDI dependency benefits belong to the child, which is a distinct and separate entitlement available to the child because of the father's disability. Id. at 202, PP 7-8, 92 P.3d at 428.