Child Support Attorney in Anderson, South Carolina
Child support is serious business. Children deserve all the protection we can provide them. That’s why child support law focuses on putting children first. However, a lot of questions relating to child support can come to mind, especially when you need to modify to create a child support plan during or after your divorce. Reach out to our child support attorney to learn what you need to know about child support arrangements in Anderson, South Carolina, and the surrounding areas of Northlake, Liberty, and Pickens.
Divorce settlements generally include a child support arrangement. A child support arrangement may also result following a custody settlement. So, what is child support?
In essence, child support consists of payments (usually monthly) made by the non-custodial parent to the child or children’s custodian. The custodian is the parent with whom the children reside. The non-custodial parent has a court-ordered obligation to provide funds for children’s basic living expenses such as food, clothing, shelter, education, and health care.
Please note that child support does not include payments made to a former spouse. These payments are known as alimony and consist of a separate agreement or divorce settlement.
Factors Considered in a Child Support Arrangement
A judge in a family court determines child support payments based on many different factors. Federal law requires that all states include child support calculation guidelines. These guidelines ensure that family courts fix child support payments based on the child’s needs and the parents’ specific conditions.
Some of the guidelines considered include the following:
The child’s needs (education, living expenses, care, and special needs)
The custodial parent’s financial situation (income and expenses)
The non-custodial parent’s financial situation (employment, earnings, assets)
The child’s living conditions prior to the divorce or separation
Please note that courts do not automatically set a child support amount. Courts ask the parties and their family attorneys to disclose financial information to show the family’s current living situation. From there, the parties and their family attorneys may reach an agreement. Alternatively, the court can determine the child support amount.
Additionally, the non-custodial parent’s imputed income may be used to calculate child support payments. Imputed income consists of non-salary earnings and benefits. However, the imputation of income is not automatic and usually up to the court’s discretion.
Modifying an Existing Child Support Arrangement
Child support arrangements in Anderson, South Carolina, may be modified due to various factors:
The child’s changing needs
The custodial parent’s financial or health situation
Increases in the cost of living
Changes in the non-custodial parent’s financial situation (increase in earnings, assets, or employment changes)
Please bear in mind that modifying an existing child support arrangement must be done in court. Therefore, hiring the right family law attorney in Greenville County, South Carolina, will help modify an existing child support arrangement to get children the support they deserve.
Terminating a Child Support Arrangement
In general, the termination of a child support arrangement occurs when the child turns 18 years of age. However, child support may continue beyond 18 years of age to provide for the child’s ongoing education expenses.
Here are additional circumstances in which termination of a child support arrangement may occur:
The child is 18 and no longer attends school.
The child marries.
The child emancipates (leaves home and is self-supporting).
The child enlists in the military.
The child is adopted or deported.
Changes in the child’s legal custody.
The child passes away.
The custodial and non-custodial parents remarry or cohabitate once again.
Please note that termination of child support is not automatic. The obligor must request a family law attorney to submit the corresponding paperwork to secure the proper court order. The custodial parent also has the right to appeal the court’s decision.
Child Support Attorney Serving Anderson, SC
At the David F. Stoddard Law Firm, protecting children’s rights is our top priority. We strive to reach child support arrangements out of court, but we’re not afraid to step into the courtroom if we must. We work hard to provide our clients with the help they need in the areas surrounding Anderson, South Carolina, including Northlake, Liberty, Pickens, or anywhere in Greenville County. Our personalized service and hands-on approach allow us to show we care for our clients. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can provide you with the help you need.