What is Child Support Law? How to Find a Child Support Lawyer

 Child Support Law

What is Child Support Law?

Child support law governs the determination of child support payments as well as the enforcement mechanisms permitted to collect those funds. It is a sub part of the family law of each state.

Governing Law

Child support law is a codified body of law, having a strict set of requirements set out by statute. Case law is helpful for interpreting some of the more nuanced portions of the law, but in general, it is a fairly straightforward category of law and relies on the code more than most other areas of family law. The law itself breaks down the requirements for establishing initial child support as well as the modification and termination of support payments. You can get copies of the relevant legislation and forms from your local courthouse. You will either need to go to the clerk’s office or the IV-D office, depending on your county and state. You can also obtain copies of the forms for calculating child support so that you can anticipate what is likely to be ordered. The controlling law will be the law of the jurisdiction in which you file your suit and live or the jurisdiction in which the marriage or divorce happened.

Reasons for Hiring an Attorney

Child support law is one area where you can sometimes represent yourself. However, it is still wise to hire an attorney, either from a law firm or a solo practice, to represent your interests. This becomes particularly true if the other parent is represented by an attorney or if you are the non custodial parent. The state does not represent the non custodial parent, but the state does represent the interests of the child through enforcement by the IV-D office. This means that if you are unable to make payments for some reason or need a modification, then you could benefit from a legally trained advocate to assist you in getting the best deal possible.

You may also need an attorney from a law firm if you are not the parent but you have obtained physical custody of the children. To receive child support payments, you will have to intervene and be joined in the case along with receiving an order that documents the transition of your position as guardian. This will be determined by the best interests of the child standard, and after it has been determined to be in the best interests of the child, you will be made guardian and receive the child support payments for the benefit of the child.

Things to Look for in a Child Support Lawyer

A lawyer with experience in family law is good when looking for a child support lawyer. If money is tight though, you can hire a new attorney so long as she is qualified to practice law in your state. However, if you have other family law issues that are cropping up and which will need to be dealt with, you may want an attorney who can assist you with those matters as well. Some lawyers provide discounts when they handle multiple issues such as drafting a settlement.

Remember though that if you hire an attorney to represent you and you are the non custodial parent, you will not be able to get information from the IV-D office. Your attorney will have to contact them for information. While the IV-D office may make some exceptions, this is generally enforced as a public policy consideration. Bear in mind though that when handling child support matters, most attorneys will require that you pay a certain amount upfront. Pro rata payments and contingency fees are not permitted in the majority of states for family law matters, including child support law, so this means that to maintain representation.

Child Support Blogs

  • Child Support Responsibility and Modifications

    Child support payments can make you feel like you’re about to go bankrupt. Despite the fact that these payments are calculated generally in light of your actual earnings, they can still put quite a strain on your finances. However, strain or no...