Child Support Lawyers in Cypress
Determining & Modifying Child Support Payments
Divorce is difficult on all family members involved. When it comes to figuring out child support payments, you need a good understanding of how child support is calculated and impacted by your Texas laws as well as what factors affect a judge’s determination. Our attorneys at Hunt Law Firm offer support and compassionate counsel to families seeking child support services.
We offer clients a variety of child support services that can be tailored to your unique family situation. Our services include:
- Creation of child support orders
- Contempt issues
What Does Child Support Cover in Texas?
Parents always have a financial obligation to support their children, which is why child support is ordered in every divorce when minor children are involved. No matter which side of the equation you fall on, you may be wondering what child support covers. Recipients will want to appropriately budget and the paying parent will want to ensure it is being used appropriately.
Generally, child support is designed to provide for the reasonable living expenses of raising a child and the amount awarded is based on a variety of factors, including the income of each parent.
Here are some of the items child support funds may be used on:
- Clothing and personal items
- Food and accommodations
- Educational costs, including books, school supplies, and fees
- Medical and dental expenses
- Travel and entertainment
- Other items that may be considered reasonable and fair
Additionally, there may be some other expenses for extracurricular activities, which you will need court approval for. Judges typically approve these costs and see these activities as an essential part of a child’s social development.
Some extracurricular activities child support may be applied to include:
- Musical instruments and lessons
- Art activities
- Sports programs
- Other activities that fall outside of conventional educational curriculum
Of course, there are some items that are not considered necessary and are not supported by child support in Texas.
Below is a list of items the court may not approve child support for:
- Luxury items, including designer clothing and fine jewelry
- Cosmetic surgery
- A car for those who are old enough to drive
- Private school tuition
- Other unnecessary expenses
If you want to question or dispute expenditures of child support, you can do so through the proper legal channels, but it is crucial that you continue to comply with the court order. You cannot simply refuse to pay child support, regardless if you believe it is not being used appropriately.
How to Determine Monthly Child Support Payments in Texas
A judge will rely on the best interest of the child standard to make a child support determination. The factors that impact this decision include:
- The age of the child
- The physical and mental health of the child
- The time each parent spends with the child
- Expenses associated with childcare, health insurance, education, etc.
- The financial wellbeing of each parent, including debts
- Whether one parent can afford to pay child support
- Whether the receiving parent needs child support
- Additional expenditures for the child
Once a determination has been made, an amount is then calculated. To get an idea of what your monthly child support payment would be, refer to what the Attorney General of Texas calls the monthly child support calculator.
Child Support Modifications
If your financial circumstances have changed, you may be eligible for a child support modification. You are eligible for a child support payment modification if:
- The child support order was established or modified more than 3 years ago
- The monthly amount of the child support order differs by either: 20% or $100 from the amount that would be awarded
- There has been a material or substantial change in circumstances after the order was established
Defining Material and Substantial Changes in Circumstances
Changes in circumstance that would generally permit a child support modification include:
- The noncustodial parent's income has increased or decreased
- The noncustodial parent is legally and financially responsible for additional children
- The child(ren)'s medical insurance coverage has changed
- The child(ren) live with a different parent
How to Request a Child Support Modification Review
You can submit an official Request for Review of a child support order amount by completing an online request. You can also complete and mail in this document to the Texas Child Support Division. The address to mail your Request for Review of child support is:
Office of the Attorney General
Child Support Division
P.O. Box 12017
Austin, TX 78711-2017
Call Our Cypress Child Support Lawyers for Legal Representation Anywhere in Harris County
The court factors in varying considerations when determining child support, so it is beneficial to hire an attorney to walk you through the process. In the event a child support dispute arises, you will want to ensure you have the right lawyer behind you. Our Cypress child support lawyers offer comprehensive child support services for families seeking guidance and will protect your parental right should a dispute happen.
Get in touch online or call us at (832) 781-0320 to book a consultation today.
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