Getting divorced can be an emotional event. This may be especially true when children are involved. However, even after child custody and visitation schedules have been settled, child support can have a huge financial impact on an individual’s life. Either he or she will have to pay support or a custodial parent may seek to recover support.
But how is the amount of child support to be paid calculated? As we have discussed on this blog before, when left to a court, a judge will look at each party’s income as well as the child’s needs and expenses. However, another key factor of the child support obligation is the amount of time that each parent spends with the child. This primarily arises in instances where parents have joint physical and legal custody.
While it’s true that a child typically splits his time with his parents under a joint custody arrangement, there may be times where he spends much more time with one parent than the other. The reasons for this can vary greatly and may include one parent moving, one parent facing financial hardship or relationship issues between a parent and a child. Regardless of the reason, though, a change in the amount of time spent with one parent may justify the need for a child support modification.
No matter which side of a child support dispute an individual falls on, there may be legal arguments that can be made to help ease his or her financial strain. A family law attorney may be able to help these individual assess their situation and develop a plan to best address their needs, whether that means seeking child support or seeking a child support modification
Source: Department of Children & Family Services, “Child Support Enforcement Services Provided,” accessed on Feb. 17, 2017