State law gives minor children a right to financial support from their parents. This money can pay for things like food, clothes and housing. It can also cover health care costs, including co-pays and deductibles. A case starts with a petition filed by one or both parents or the Child Support Enforcement Agency.
A judge can determine a child support amount, but negotiating an agreement with the other parent is often easier. This is where an experienced attorney can help. During mediation, parents can openly discuss their financial situations and must develop a fair agreement. They may also be able to agree on “add-on” expenses such as music lessons, sports teams and art classes, which are not covered by the standard child support guidelines.
Children’s needs change over time, which must be reflected in a child support agreement. Verifying the other parent’s income by reviewing their pay stubs and tax returns is also important. Documentation of the cost of child-related items such as health insurance can be used to determine a child support amount. It is important to remember that if the other parent fails to pay child support, they can be found in contempt of court, which can result in fines or imprisonment.
Parents have a legal duty to support their children, often accomplished via court-ordered child support payments from the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent. These payments can continue until the child reaches majority age or graduates from high school. A judge will look at many factors when determining the appropriate amount of child support.
Whether you are the payor or the child support recipient, keeping receipts and documents to prove your income is important. A judge will only be willing to trust your word with others, and you may have to provide documentation from your employer, family members, or other sources. The right child support Red Bank NJ attorney will fight for your rights, including the ability to spend time with your child, even if the mother refuses to allow it.
The lawyer will use their insight, understanding, and skill to protect your interests and your child’s. The lawyer will also be able to identify potential pitfalls and issues in the case, such as a parent hiding assets or refusing to report income.
Representation in Court
In your case, the court will hear what your child has to say, but they will also consider the views of any other experts and witnesses present. The attorney for your child will present evidence that supports what the child says, which will be given to the judge during hearings. The attorney for your child may interview you, the other parent and any other people who know your children or are involved in the case.
They will visit both homes and meet your child in their primary residence. This will allow them to talk with your child in comfortable surroundings and encourage openness. At a hearing, a Support Magistrate will determine how much child support you should receive and pay based on your income. The judge will ask questions during the hearing, and you must bring a completed Financial Affidavit to your court appearance.
Under most circumstances, parents will receive a child support order that will include a formula for determining how much money is needed to pay for the children’s food, shelter, clothing and other basic needs. This is called the “basic child support obligation.” There are also mandatory add-on costs, such as health care and daycare expenses, that must be included in the support amount.
Once a child support agreement is in place, both parties must adhere to its terms. If one party does not comply, they could face serious legal consequences. In addition to making timely payments, both parents must keep detailed records of their financial information in case a modification is necessary.
It is possible to terminate a parent’s rights if a judge decides that one of the following situations exists: Serious Risk of Physical, Emotional or Mental Injury. This type of termination is typically a private matter between family members, although CPS or DFS may file a petition in cases of abuse or neglect.