Awarding Child Support in Atlanta

There are many aspects that go into awarding child support in Atlanta. You should not enter hearings or litigation without guidance from a dedicated child support attorney who could help you prepare for court proceedings. Get in touch with qualified legal counsel to learn more about how the local courts handle child support cases.

Child Support Eligibility

Any child with divorced parents who is under the age of 18 or has not graduated high school is eligible for child support in Atlanta. Child support is for children, not for parents. Eligibility is based on the marital status of a minor child’s parents. Eligibility might change under certain circumstances like if the child gets married before their 18th birthday, dies before turning 18, or graduates from high school and becomes self-supporting as determined by the court.

Deciding an Amount on Child Support

The amount of child support awarded to a person is ultimately determined by agreement of the parties. If the parties come up with a number that they want to use, then the court will typically go along with it when awarding child support in Atlanta. Otherwise, it is determined by official worksheets and the judge’s findings.

How do Custody Arrangements Impact Child Support?

Custody arrangements influence the amount of child support that a parent must pay. In situations where one party has primary physical custody, the non-custodial parent would likely be required to pay more in child support. However, if both parties share joint physical custody, then the amount of child support paid from one party to the other may be significantly reduced.

Special Needs Effect on Child Support

Special needs can significantly influence child support. A judge must take great care when deciding child support issues, and the courts are especially careful to consider the unique circumstances of a special needs child. Parents’ incomes play a significant role in a judge’s determination of support for a special needs child because they want to ensure that a custodial parent has the financial capacity to properly care for them.

How is Child Support Paid?

Child support is usually paid directly from one parent to the other. It can also be paid through an income deduction order which is sent to the employer of a non-custodial parent so that the support is directly withheld from their paycheck and sent to the custodial parent. Sometimes, it is paid by the Division of Child Support Services.

Contested Child Support Cases

Awarding child support in Atlanta can become highly contested when a parent wants more custody of a child based on their desire to avoid paying more support. Additionally, a parent who requests a modification can cause a case to become highly contested, and the court may have to make the decision for parties who cannot agree.

Evidence Used to Determine Child Support Payments

An experienced attorney can use bank statements, pay stubs, tax returns, W-2 forms, or K-1 forms to determine appropriate child support payments. Business owners may use tax returns and records as evidence. Emails or text messages between the parties, documented expenses which are incurred on behalf of the child, missed wages, and nanny expenses all come into play when awarding child support in Atlanta. Since there are so many complexities involved with child support issues, it is advisable to consult with a knowledgeable legal representative before entering litigation or settlement talks, so call today to get started.