Maryville Child Support Lawyers

Maryville Child Support Lawyers

Maryville child support attorneys help children receive the care they deserve

Your children need the security of a home, food, clothing, schooling, medical care, and many other needs. Our Maryville child support lawyers represent parents who both receive and pay child support. At LaFevor & Slaughter, we work to obtain court-ordered child support orders that require one parent to make regular payments to the parent who has physical custody of the children. Your children are entitled to financial support that allows them to live as comfortably as they did before your divorce or separation. We’re skilled at achieving that goal.

What expenses does child support pay cover in Maryville?

Children need a roof over their heads, food and drink, and new clothes. They need money for books and music lessons. They’re constantly growing, which means many of the items parents buy need to be replaced. There are costs for healthcare to pay for doctor visits for illnesses, cuts, and bruises.

Parents need to provide for all aspects of their children’s lives from their basic needs to the pleasures of childhood such as toys, concerts, ballgames, and other joys the parents would have paid for if they were still married. Children shouldn’t suffer just because their parents can’t get along.

After determining where your child will live and who has responsibility for your child’s daily upbringing, a determination has to be made about how much financial support your children need. That determination must be documented by a court order.

How is the amount of child support determined in Maryville?

At LaFevor & Slaughter, our Maryville child support lawyers will explain how the amount of support is determined. Generally, the parent who has physical custody of the child for the lesser amount of time makes a regular payment to the local court, which then pays the parent who has more physical custody time.

The amount of support is generally based on state guidelines. These guidelines use the income of each parent and the number of children to arrive at a specific child support amount. Our family lawyers are skilled at showing how much income your ex-spouse or co-parent earns. We understand the tricks that some spouses use to try to claim their income is much lower than it is. We represent parents who seek child support and parents who are being asked to pay child support. The parent who has more physical custody time is already paying for the home and many other expenses. This is why only one parent is ordered to pay support.

Income includes wages, salary, commissions, tips, self-employment income, bonuses, severance pay, pension and retirement income, interest, dividends, and other types of income.

In addition to the income of the parents, other factors that may determine the amount of child support that is due in Maryville include:

  • Your child’s age and health
  • Any special health needs of your child
  • The financial and non-financial contributions of each parent
  • The educational needs of your child
  • The earning capacity of each parent
  • The visitation or physical arrangements of the parent who is paying support

Tennessee child support guidelines are based on a formula. The amounts are also subject to caps. These caps limit the amount of child support a parent can be ordered to pay to the following:

  • One child: $2,100 per month
  • Two children: $3,200 per month
  • Three children: $4,100 per month
  • Four children: $4,600 per month
  • Five or more children: $5,000 per month

The parent who is required to pay child support can always voluntarily pay more than the cap amount. Often one parent includes their children on the parent’s workplace health insurance policy.

A few additional issues that are addressed when negotiating support orders include who is responsible for the health insurance/medical expenses of each child and who can claim the children as dependents for tax purposes.

How long must a parent pay child support in Maryville?

The parent who is paying child support normally must pay child support until their children turn 18 or graduate from high school. Some parents may agree to continue child support payments while their children are in college.

Our Maryville child support lawyers fight to ensure the proper amount of child support is determined and that the amount is part of a formal court order that can be enforced through the family court/system.

Child Support Lawyers Maryville TN

Can a Maryville child support order be modified?

Yes. If there is a significant change in circumstances of either parent or your child, either parent can request a modification of the child support order. However, you can’t request a modification for minor changes, such as losing a day of work to an illness or because your child needed an extra $10 for a school activity. The changes in circumstances have to be major.

Some of the reasons either parent may request modification of a support order include:

  • Loss of a job, acquiring a job, or a significant pay upgrade
  • Health problems of either parent or the children
  • Significant changes in the cost of health insurance or childcare
  • Either parent has another child
  • A child moves in or out of the house

Our Maryville child support lawyers advise parents about when and how to seek a child support order modification.

What if my ex doesn’t comply with the child support order?

First, it’s important to know that child support agreements are not binding without court. The court needs to review the amount of support and enter an appropriate order because the needs of the children must come first. This means parents and spouses cannot negotiate child support amounts in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Negotiated agreements after the parents separate or file for divorce must be approved by the family law judge.

Second, child support is separate from physical custody and visitation. You cannot stop paying child support if you don’t see your child. You need to request a hearing on your custody/visitation rights instead of withholding payment.

Not every parent pays child support in a timely manner. Many parents during the lifetime of a child support order fail to make timely payments.

Our Maryville child support lawyers file court documents when a spouse fails to pay according to the terms of a child support order. The family judge may:

  • Enter a lien on the payor spouse’s property
  • Restrict the payor’s passports
  • Authorize the seizure of tax refunds
  • Advise credit score companies
  • Garnish the payor’s spouse’s wages
  • Suspend the payor’s driver’s license

In some cases, the payor spouse could be held in contempt and sentenced to jail time until the arrears are paid.

Some exceptions and conditions may apply.

Do you have a Maryville child support attorney near me?

At LaFevor & Slaughter, our Maryville child support lawyers meet parents at our office located at 317 Ellis Ave., Suite 317. We do speak with clients by phone and through a video conference when necessary. We answer your questions promptly. Our family lawyers will explain how child support is determined, when an order can be changed, and what happens when a parent doesn’t pay the child support that is due.

Protect your child by speaking with a respected Maryville child support lawyer now

Child support payments can’t wait for all your other family law issues to be resolved. Your child needs a roof over his head today. He/she needs food and clothing now. At LaFevor & Slaughter, we’re skilled at helping parents obtain and pay support orders based on their ability to pay, the needs of their children, and their right to the pleasures of life that parents can afford. To schedule a consultation, please call our Maryville child support lawyers or use our contact form today. We’ll fight for the best interests of your children.