Child Support Attorneys in Austin TX
When you and your spouse end your marriage, your responsibilities as a parent continue. It is here that questions arise as to your legal obligations. We will explain your rights and obligations when it comes to child support.
The common factors for determining child support include the paying parent’s net income, the number of children supported by the child support payments, and other available resources. The Court will determine the net income of the paying parent, excluding social security, taxes, the child’s health insurance premiums and medical expenses paid by the paying parent, and any union dues the paying parent must pay. Once the court determines the parent’s net yearly income, the Court determines the paying parent’s net monthly income by dividing the yearly net income by 12. The resulting number is multiplied by a Court determined Child Support Guidelines.
The Child Support Payment Guidelines are laid out below for your convenience:
- If 1 child multiply the monthly net income by 20%
- If 2 children multiply the net monthly income by 25%
- If 3 children multiply the net monthly income by 30%
- If 4 children multiply the monthly net income by 35%
- If 5 children multiply the monthly net income by 40%
The maximum percentage of net income the Court will take from the paying parent’s income is 40%. If the paying parent has more than five children, the paying parent’s net monthly income will still be multiplied by 40% to determine child support payments.
Additionally, child support must be for the “proven needs of the child”. If a paying parent earns a net income greater than $7,500, the Court will only determine child support payments that meet the first $7,500. However, the Court may determine that additional support is needed for the child and make a child support determination beyond the first $7,500 net monthly income. For example, if a paying parent has a net monthly income of $10,000 per month, the Court will only look at the first $7,500 in determining the paying parent’s net income, unless the Court finds the child has additional needs that may warrant it recalculating the paying parent’s net income beyond the $7,500 range.
If you are seeking child support, currently paying child support and seek modification of your child support, or are in a position where you need to consult with a child support attorney, please contact our office. Our experienced and knowledgeable attorneys at Peek & Toland can provide you with the best advice in child support has to offer.
Child Support Frequently Asked Questions
How long doe child support payments last for the paying parent?
Often the paying parent is relieved of his or her child support duties when the child turns 18, joins the military, becomes emancipated, graduates from high school or marries. However, the Court may order the paying parent to continue paying child support beyond high school graduation, if the child has a physical or mental incapacity that would require the custodial parent to continue supporting the child. Additionally, by divorce decree, two parents may agree to continue supporting the child through college, which would include continued child support to the child.
We are here to answer all of your child support questions. Contact a dedicated Austin family law attorney today to learn exactly how we can apply our skills and knowledge to your child support case.
Can the amount of child support a paying parent is paying or a custodial parent is receiving be changed?
Yes. You may seek to modify the child support order if circumstances change or if a sufficient period of time has passed that would warrant changing the order. In order to qualify for a modification of child support the parent asking for a modification must show either:
- The paying parent’s circumstances significantly changed, which would warrant a child support modification; or
- At least three years has passed and the paying parent’s income has changed at least 20% or $100, thus warranting a child support modification.
Additionally, a child support payment can be modified so that child support payments increase or decrease based on the circumstances. For example, if the paying parent loses his or her job, he or she can petition the court to modify the child support order. On the other hand, if the paying parent is given a raise or a better job, the custodial parent can petition the court to modify the child support payments as well.
If you are current paying or receiving child support and you want more information on modifying the child support order, contact our experienced and knowledgeable attorneys at Peek & Toland. We can help you ensure your child support order is correct and fair.
What are the penalties for failing to pay child support?
If the paying parent fails to pay child support, he or she can be subject to wage garnishment, collection of lottery winnings, interception of federal income tax returns, suspension of driver’s license, professional business license, suspension of a passport, and contempt of court order, which can result in imprisonment and/or fines.
If you are in a child support situation where you cannot afford to pay, the paying parent is not paying, or you want help figuring out your options with your current child support order, please contact our office at Peek & Toland. We have years of family law experience and professional and knowledgeable attorneys to help you with your child support order.