Marietta Child Support Lawyer
The Purpose of Child Support in Georgia
According to the Georgia Division of Child Support Services, approximately 337,000 parents across the state have been ordered to pay child support, either after a divorce or as the result of a
paternity action. Parents who are current on their payments account for 60.7% of this number, and fathers are ordered to make support payments in 91% of cases. Under state law, both parents have a duty to provide for their children's financial needs according to their ability to do so. In fact, non-custodial parents can be ordered to pay child support whether or not they were ever married to the other parent.
When ruling on a child support dispute in a contested divorce or approving a proposed plan of payment in an uncontested divorce, the judge will weigh evidence of both parents' financial resources. They will also determine how much the children will require for daily expenses, education and healthcare. The goal is to shield the children from suffering a negative economic impact as a result of the dissolution of marriage. The Marietta divorce attorneys at Henrickson & Sereebutra can help you present your case and argue in favor of a plan which does not place an unfair burden on your shoulders.
How Child Support Payments are Calculated
When making a determination about the amount of child support that will be awarded to a custodial parent (the parent with which the child lives or spends most of their time), the court will take a number of different factors into consideration – including the child's specific financial needs and the non-custodial parent's apparent ability to provide for them. More specifically, however, child support payments are set in accordance with state guidelines, which take the following factors into account:
- Both parents' total monthly income
- How many children are involved / need support
- The amount of time each parent spends with the child
Need help enforcing a child support order?
If the parent who has been ordered to make child support payments has fallen behind or become delinquent, you should not attempt to resolve the matter on your own. After all, you got a divorce so that you would no longer have to fight with your former spouse. Let a Marietta divorce lawyer from the firm help you bring the matter before a judge, who can take action to enforce the court order. The other parent may be compelled to pay through penalties such as a driver's license suspension or even an arrest. You may also be able to secure payment through a wage garnishment.
Need to modify your child support payments?
It is possible, though not easy, to legally modify the terms of child support when major life changes have made the current arrangement unworkable. Job loss or major medical events are common reasons why a paying parent would need to reduce the monthly obligation, or why a recipient could request an increase. You could also request a larger payment if you have learned that the other parent is now earning a larger income and capable of paying more. This is something that Henrickson & Sereebutra may be able to assist you with. Call now to learn more about your legal options.
Contact our firm if you need skilled counsel from a divorce attorney in Marietta!