Personal Injury Lawyer
Being a parent is difficult work, as you try to balance your child’s needs with your own and the financial pressures that come along with it. Depending on your relationship with the other parent, the dispute over child support payments may be negotiated peacefully outside of court or become a highly contentious one in front of a judge. If both parents can negotiate the terms of child support amongst themselves, then they can avoid the stress and hassle of going to court. However, if court is needed, then a judge will have the ultimate say. If you are a parent who needs advice about a child support case, here are some things you should know:
File early and complete paperwork completely and correctly.
If you are filing for child support and it’s the first time, then you must initiate it as soon as possible. File early, and make sure your paperwork is filled out in its entirety and that there are no errors. It is advisable to have a lawyer review the paperwork before submittal, in order to reduce the chance of a mistake happening and then delaying the child support case. A lawyer can review the documentation to ensure that information is correct before submission.
Be prepared to provide your income and expenses.
A judge is going to make a decision about child support payment amounts depending on the financial status of each parent, in addition to how custody is shared. Be forthcoming about your finances so that the verdict is decided in a way that is fair for all and to make sure the children get proper education, medical care, equipment for sports or hobbies, clothing, and other necessities of living. Examples of information the judge may need related to your income and expenses include:
- Pay stubs
- Tax returns
- Medical costs
- Utility bills
- Work benefits
- Other costs of living
Remain cooperative and stay willing to negotiate or compromise.
A judge is going to appreciate a parent who shows they are willing to work with the other parent and have the children’s best interest in mind. As stressful as a child support dispute can be, remember to remain flexible and respectful. Even if the other parent is acting out, staying calm is the best way to show yourself as a reliable parent that wants to make sure their children are taken care of properly.
Our child support lawyer associates from The Law Office of Daniel E. Stuart, P.A. can also attest to the fact that family law disputes can be overwhelming, and the issue of child support can be quite contentious. By filing paperwork on time and correctly, having financial documentation readily available for the judge, and remaining level-headed can make all the difference in the child support verdict.