Child support is defined as a financial obligation, it is your responsibility and you have to support your children as they mature. If you own child custody, the courts consider that you meet your financial responsibilities. On the contrary, if your child is not living with you, the courts may demand that you need to pay child support to the custodial parent.
If the court orders that you pay child support, you will pay until your children reach the age of adulthood, your children are in military active-duty, or until the court states your children are emancipated. However, if your child has special needs, you may pay child support past childhood.
The court may terminate your financial obligations and parental rights for your child, if you and the other parent agree collectively that you no longer need to pay child support, or if you permit someone else to adopt or raise your child.
How Are Obligations Of Child Support Determined?
Guidelines for child support vary according to the state’s own laws, and the court especially considers the final amount. The debate about child support starts with custody.
If one parent has sole custody, the non-custodial parent usually pays most of the child support. The custodial parent may be a stay-at-home parent or a parent who does a part-time job in order to look after the child. The payments of child support show the reality that the custodial parent most probably doesn’t have sufficient financial sources to effectively provide for the child.
How Is Payment Of Child Support Determined?
The court fixes the payments of child support depending upon the parents’ earnings, and the amount of time each parent has physical custody of the child. Earnings, as identified by the court, may include:
- Commissions & Tips
- Self-employment incomes
- Disability amounts
- Veteran’s benefits
- Government or Private Retirement financial benefits
- Workers’ wages
- Social Security financial benefits
- Unemployment financial benefits
Changing Payments Of Child Support Amounts
If child support amounts are fixed, it cannot be changed without legal action. A difference in circumstances may require a change in payable amounts.
For instance, if you extend the amount of time of physical custody of your child, the court may reduce the payments of your child support in order to reflect the change. The court may also decrease payments if you have lost your job and become jobless, or are required to take a new job with more economical pay.
Sometimes court reduces child support payments if you left your office to pursue a hobby, or go back to studies. Getting laid off is observed differently than spontaneously resigning your job, particularly it seems as though you quit your job to bypass having to make child support payments.
You may also get temporary modifications to your child support payment schedule. In case of emergency or some sudden financial difficulties strikes, the court may temporarily reduce your payments of child support. In addition, if the custodial parent faces financial problems, the non-custodial parent may notice a temporary addition in child support payments. Even, if both, custodial and non-custodial parents, agree on modifications to payments, both parents require to go to court for making changes legally.
Consequences Of Refusing To Pay Child Custody
The court fixes the amount of child support and the schedule of payments. Some of the potential outcomes of declining to pay ordered child support payments include:
- Seizer of Property
- Wage garnishment
- Business license may get suspended
- Suspension of your driving license
- Tax refund interception
If it has become difficult for you to pay child support as ordered, you are required to let the court know as soon as possible. Don’t let the problem get out of control. Be honest and upfront about your difficulties.
Separating Visitation And Child Support
Parents cannot answer to visitation disputes by threatening to deny the payments of child support. If the custodial parent does not permit you to visit your child as directed by the court, never retaliate by refusing child support payments. Withholding to pay child support is illegal, and this damages your children more than the other parent.
The court separates child support and visitation. If you believe that you don’t receive your right of visitation, you should go to the court with pieces of evidence and have the custody agreement implemented. Keep paying child support as ordered, to get rid of the worse outcomes of denying payments.
If the Non-Custodial Parent Isn’t Paying Child Support?
If the non-custodial parent refuses to pay child support, as a custodial parent contact your state attorney or contact us if you are based in California. Federal law says that state agencies must assist you in collecting unpaid payments of child support. Some states have Recovery Services offices, designed to help you track down unpaid parents, and recover the amount of child support.
Always keep the records of the last amount collected and documents of the court determining the schedule and payments.
Child Support And Income Taxes
Income taxes are exempted from child support payments that you collect on behalf of your child. And if you are paying child support, it cannot be deducted from your earnings.
The parent who can claim the children as a dependent can obtain a notable tax deduction. Typically, the parent with whom the children live for more than half the year can claim the child as a dependent. Only one parent can claim a dependent on a tax return; both parents cannot claim the same dependent
Select the Right Kind Of Child Support Option
The law permits parents to make their own determinations about how to help and support their child, within specific broad parameters. It depicts that you are not required to go to court to solve any family disputes or child support matters. You can enter an agreement without going into court. In addition, you don’t have to abide by particularly what a court might have done in your matter. You can go through with your own tailored solution.
When parents cannot enter an agreement about their child support matter and go to a court to settle for them, State statutes and case law implement. The law directs the judge on how to determine child support for the parents before them.
Let Us Know
The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) says “about 41% of first marriages end in divorce. For second and third marriages that number increases to 60% and 73%, respectively”
Single parents with children should have a fundamental knowledge of child support. Unless parental rights have been terminated legally in the U.S., every parent must financially contribute to the raising of his or her children.
Have you had experiences paying or receiving child support? What are some of the biggest challenges that you’ve faced?
Whether you’re planning on going to court or making your own, independent agreements about child support in a settlement-focused process (like mediation or Collaborative Law), you still need to know what would likely happen in court.