When you decide to separate ways with your spouse by seeking a divorce, you need to consider many things, especially if you have kids. One of these critical considerations is child support. It refers to the periodic payments made by a parent for the benefit of the child who’s in the custody of the other parent due to the termination of their marriage. Among the marital and family issues involved in a divorce, child support is one of the matters that all parents should familiarize themselves with when they choose to end their marriage.
If you’re a mom who got divorced from the father of your child, below are the things you need to know about child support:
- Person Responsible For Child Support
Generally, parents who don’t get custody of their kids after divorce must support them financially to the extent they can. Also, it’s essential to note that the child support entitlement may not be stopped even if the custodial parent begins to live with someone else or remarry. For example, if you decide to marry another person, your kids’ father shouldn’t stop the child support payment just because of your remarriage.
On the other hand, biological fathers also have to provide financial support to their children, although they’re not married or don’t live with their mothers. If the person denies their paternal relationship to the child, the court may order a blood test to determine if the former is the biological father who’s obliged to pay for child support. So, if you haven’t married the father of your child for whatever reason, you can still file a petition for child support in court against them.
Additionally, if you remarry and your new spouse decides to adopt your child legally, the latter becomes financially liable for supporting your kid. Hence, if you choose to get a divorce afterward, the step-parent will still be responsible for the child support as an effect of legal adoption.
- Timing For Child Support Application
One of the essential things to remember is the timing of the child support’s application. Typically, the timing can be different, depending on the individual circumstances. For example, if you’re the mother and your kid is living with you after separating from your spouse, their father, you can apply for child support right after the separation. If you don’t need financial support for your child at first, you can still apply for it at a later date or when the need arises.
However, if you want to ensure you file the petition for child support on time, working with a lawyer from McCunn Law or any other reputable law firm can be a good idea. They’re familiar with the different areas of family, including child custody support. Thus, they can give you valuable legal advice about when to ask for child support from the non-custodial parent.
- Circumstances That Warrant The Termination Of Child Support
Another thing that moms should learn about child support is how long it should last. This is an important thing to know so you can financially prepare for your kid’s future. As a general rule, the person vested with the duty to provide financial support should continue making periodic payments, except in the following circumstances:
- Your child reaches the age of majority or is no longer a minor, unless they have special needs.
- Adoption or other related legal processes has terminated the parental rights over your kid.
- The court determines that the child is legally emancipated or can support themselves.
- Calculation Of Child Support
In most cases, states have different guidelines regarding the amount of child support. They’re given a fair amount of discretion regarding how the amount is calculated and what expenses are covered. Because of this, it’s important for the parent providing child support to furnish adequate financial information to the court. The purpose is to make sure that the payments are computed as fairly as possible.
However, even if the amounts vary from one state to another, the computation is usually based on common factors. These can include the kid’s specific needs, the kid’s standard of living before the divorce happens, financial resources, and the ability to pay the non-custodial parent.
- Consequences Of Non-Payment Of Child Support
It’s also important to note that non-custodial parents who don’t fulfill their child support obligations may face some serious consequences. Hence, if your child’s father fails to do so, they may face the following consequences:
- Garnishment of the wages
- Seizure of their property
- Suspension of your business
- Short-term jail time
Typically, payment of child support can be considered a serious legal matter. Failure of the non-custodial parent to meet their obligations will affect your kid’s life and their life as well. Thus, it’s crucial to ensure that the other parent remains responsible for the amount of child support agreed upon to avoid serious consequences.
Child support is an important matter to discuss after the termination of your marriage. For instance, if you’re a mother who’s in the custody of your kid, it’s best to educate yourself with the basics of child support, including how to get the most out of it for the benefit of your little one. That’s why by keeping the things mentioned above in mind, you’ll be prepared for whatever happens during the child support process.