What Factors Influence Child Support Payments?
When a divorce involves a couple with children, Michigan courts will often order one spouse to provide payments to the other. These payments are intended to help with the financial expenses of raising the child.
Typically, child support payments are only necessary until the child or children turn eighteen. After this time, the children are legal adults.
Most people that are going through the process of divorce are unsure how child support payments will be determined. In the following article, we will discuss several factors that can influence child support payments in Michigan.
Above all else, if you are going through a divorce, contact an accomplished family law attorney.
Which Spouse Needs to Pay Child Support?
Parents are required to financially support their children. This is true even if a parent does not engage in visitation. In some cases, parents are required to pay child support even if they forfeit their parental rights.
Under Michigan state law, the family courts use a child support formula to determine which parent will provide child support payments. This formula will also be used to determine the amount of financial support that the parent owes.
The Michigan child support formula takes into account the amount of each parent’s wealth. It also accounts for the amount of time that the child spends with each of their parents.
This formula also addresses the following factors:
- The number of overnights spent with each parent annually
- The number of children in need of support
- Each parent’s income
- The family’s health care costs
- Childcare expenses
- And more
Family court judges in Michigan are required to order child support according to this formula. Some exceptions are permissible, however.
When the Michigan child support formula would yield an unfair or inappropriate result, the judge can order a different arrangement.
If the divorcing parents have agreed to a certain child support arrangement, the judge can consider it. However, judges do not have to agree to the parents’ suggestions.
In fact, if the parents agree to child support that is different from the Michigan child support formula, they are required to fill out an additional form. This form is called the Uniform Child Support Order Deviation Addendum.
Uniform Child Support Orders
Following a divorce, the overseeing judge may issue an order known as a Uniform Child Support Order (UCSO). This order specifies the amount of monthly child support that the paying parent must provide by law.
Typically, the child support amount takes additional factors into account. Some examples include:
- The child’s health insurance premiums
- The average cost of childcare
- Unforeseen medical expenses
If the parents or child are dependent on public assistance, it can also affect the structure and amount of child support payments.
Each case is unique. Many factors will influence the amount of monthly child support that the paying parent will provide.
Contact an Accomplished Family Law Attorney
If you are facing a divorce and have questions regarding child support, contact a legal professional. A family law attorney can help you to work toward a child support arrangement that works for you. It is important to secure a legal representative who will fight for your best interests.
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