Things all parents should know about child support

On behalf of South Tampa Law Group posted in child support on Tuesday, May 10, 2016.

For Tampa parents who decide to divorce or split up, determining who will have primary custody of the children can be a long and difficult process. However, if it is not done properly, there are severe consequences that can occur. For many, child support is critical and there are steps that both parents must take in order to protect themselves.

First and foremost, paternity needs to be established in cases where child support is needed. Essentially, paternity makes the father legally responsible for the child. If there is no proof that the child was fathered by a certain individual, the court cannot make that person be responsible for child support. Additionally, both parents are responsible for financially supporting the child. If one person has primary custody, the other parent will likely be ordered to make child support payments.

Both parents should have the child support run through a child support enforcement office. This way, there is a record that the correct amount was paid. This can prevent potential arguments in the future, and it also helps prevent parents from falling behind in their child support payments as this can have severe legal ramifications.

Raising a child is expensive and can be difficult for single parents. Under these circumstances, the child support provided by the other parent may ensure that the child has what is needed. However, there are times when a parent who has been ordered to pay support becomes unable to do so for reasons such as a medical condition or a job loss. In such an event, an attorney could assist in preparing and filing a motion requesting a modification of the order.