After a divorce, one parent may be required to pay child support. These payments are designed to ensure that each parent plays an equal role in financially supporting their children, regardless of where they live. However, understanding its intricacies may be challenging. If you handle your child support case yourself, you may make mistakes that may have serious financial implications. To avoid these pitfalls, it's vital to understand family law and hire a lawyer. In this article, you'll learn about four child support pitfalls you'll avoid if you understand family law:
Not Knowing How Much Support You Should Be Paying or Receiving
Many parents make the mistake of assuming that child support is always split equally. However, this may not be the case. The amount of child support each parent pays is based on various factors. These include the income and expenses of both parents, the number of children involved, any existing agreements or court orders, and other extenuating circumstances. If you're unsure about the amount of child support you should be paying or receiving, consult a family law attorney. These lawyers will review your financial situation and negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.
Not Reporting Changes In Your Income
When calculating child support payments, some states require the parties involved to report any changes in income to enable them to make adjustments accordingly. Failing to do so could lead to costly penalties or even jail time. If your salary has gone up or down, contact a lawyer. They'll help you report the changes, saving you from unpleasant surprises.
Not Following Through With Payments
Child support payments are not optional. They are mandatory and must be paid on time each month to avoid penalties. If you're having difficulty making your payments, it's best to consult a lawyer as soon as possible so that they can help you come up with a plan of action.
Not Understanding Your State's Laws
Each state has laws governing child support, and it's important for both parents to understand their rights before entering into any agreement. Understanding family law will enable you to keep up with your state's laws and make the right decisions. If you can't understand these laws, you can talk to a family lawyer who will gladly explain them to you.
A child support case can be difficult to handle. However, if you understand family law, you can avoid costly mistakes. If you find yourself facing any of these common pitfalls, consult an attorney so they can review your case and provide you with the best legal advice.