Columbia, MD Child Support Lawyer

Baltimore Crimianl Defense Lawyers

Child support can be a difficult and emotional topic for many in Columbia. While taking an ex-spouse to court can be a challenging decision, it might be necessary to ensure they provide the financial support your child deserves.

If you are the custodial parent of your children, you are likely entitled to receive some financial support from their other parent. This comes in the form of child support and can be decided during divorce proceedings or, after the fact, in family court. Child support payments can be modified in Columbia, provided there is a change in a non-custodial parent’s financial situation or for other legitimate and provable reasons. When receiving child support, you might also get alimony payments. While these kinds of financial support are separate from one another, alimony might be decreased depending on child support. Unlike alimony, you can receive child support whether or not you were married to your child’s other parent.

Call (410) 694-7291 and set up a free and confidential analysis of your case with the Columbia, MD child support lawyers at Rice, Murtha & Psoras today.

Getting Child Support Payments in Columbia, MD

If you and your spouse have recently divorced and are about to determine custody of your shared children, it is important to establish whether or not child support will be paid and by whom in Columbia.

Simply put, child support is the money paid from the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent to help cover costs associated with two people’s shared children. Child support does not only have to be determined during divorce proceedings. If you were never married to the person you share children with, our child support lawyers can help you take them to court to determine the regular funds they owe you.

The custodial parent typically receives child support as they are the parent who is primarily responsible for housing, clothing, and feeding a child. Child support is based on each parent’s income and expenses. If your child has a medical condition requiring regular treatment, or there are other expenses related to your child, like child care, those costs will also be considered. Our attorneys will help you submit a financial statement to the court so that you are transparent about your financial situation when asking for child support.

The percentage of child support obligation the non-custodial parent pays will be partially based on their income and means as well. Even if the custodial parent has more income than the non-custodial parent, the non-custodial will still likely have to pay some amount in child support in Columbia.

Readjusting Child Support Payments in Columbia, MD

Over the course of a child’s life, their parents’ financial situations might change drastically. Depending on the case, this could mean that a readjustment of child support payments is called for in Columbia.

Suppose you are the custodial parent of your children, and the non-custodial parent has recently had a substantial increase in income. In that case, they might now be responsible for paying a larger percentage of the child support obligation. Changes to a custody agreement can also change a person’s child support obligation.

Parents must file a motion with the court to modify child support payments. It is important to complete this process properly so that there is documentation of your request to adjust the agreement and a mechanism in place to enforce those changes. Speaking to the non-custodial parent out of court and taking their word that they will increase their child support payments does not guarantee that that will take place. Judges rarely alter child support arrangements without proof or sufficient reason to increase payments made to the custodial parent. If you file a motion to modify child support on the basis of your ex-spouse’s increased income, they might be required to submit proof of income to the court.

If the non-custodial parent has refused to pay child support, you can also take them to court to get the payment your child deserves in Columbia. Voluntary impoverishment, or choosing not to work so that they do not have to pay child support, is not a suitable reason for a non-custodial parent to miss payment dates. These matters can be difficult to navigate, especially when children are involved, which is why following the proper guidelines for these processes is important.

Child Support and Alimony Payments in Columbia, MD

When two people divorce, child support is not the only financial support that one might be required to provide the other in Columbia. Because of that, many people might be concerned that they have to choose between receiving alimony or child support.

Spousal support in the form of alimony and child support are two different things. For example, the spouse with the larger income might be required to pay monthly alimony to the spouse with the lower income for several years following divorce. Child support can exist with or without alimony and can be granted to a custodial parent that was not married to their child’s other parent.

Family court matters are somewhat flexible and might ebb and flow depending on the situation. For example, your alimony payments might be reduced somewhat in return for larger child support payments, especially if the bulk of your expenses post-divorce revolve around your children. Furthermore, certain arrangements, like prenuptial agreements, prohibit alimony being paid in the event of a divorce. Prenuptial agreements do not impact possible child support payments. And, while alimony can often be voided in the event of infidelity, facets of a divorced couple’s relationship have nothing to do with decisions made around child support in Columbia. While child support and alimony can be paid simultaneously, they are not always paid together, depending on each family’s specific situation.

Get Child Support in Columbia, MD

To have our child support lawyers assess your case for free, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras now at (410) 694-7291.