Child Support Lawyers for Men
Parents have a legal duty to support their children. This is true of both parents even if they never marry or divorce. When parents do not live together, often one parent ends up paying child support to the other.
If you are a man in a child custody case, whether you expect to pay or receive child support, you need to retain a lawyer who will look out for your best interests, as well as your child's.
Child Support Considerations
Traditionally, men paid child support to the mother. That is still the most common situation, but today courts recognize that giving mothers custody is not always in a child's best interest. In addition, with most women in the workforce, it is becoming more common for women to pay child support to men.
Whatever your situation, it is important to understand how courts determine child support. Individual states set their own guidelines, but these are some of the most commonly considered factors:
- Parents' incomes
- Child care costs
- The child's individual needs
- Custody arrangements
Often courts calculate support payments as a percentage of the non-custodial parent's net income. The percentage can change based on the number of children and the amount of time each parent actually spends with the child.
How Child Support Lawyers Can Help Men
A lawyer who specializes in helping men with child support issues can make sure you are treated fairly. Child support issues are not always cut and dried. For example, in joint custody situations, often neither parent pays child support. But if one parent's income is significantly lower than the other, that parent could be eligible for child support to ensure the child's expenses are covered while with either parent.
Your child support lawyer can help you navigate those types of situations, as well as make sure all aspects of your case are handled properly. Your attorney can:
- Ensure all income is accounted for. Most states have a broad definition of income for child support purposes. They include sources of funds ranging from salaries to gambling winnings. Some states exclude things such as capital gains, while others include them. Your lawyer can make sure both parents' incomes are based on the proper sources of funds in your state.
- Ensure net income is calculated correctly. Your lawyer can make sure all the right mandatory deductions are made from your income—or that your child's mother is not claiming deductions she is not entitled to. If your state also allows deductions for basic living expenses, your lawyer can also ensure the court allows reasonable expenses for you.
- Help you get or enforce a child support order, if necessary. If your child's mother should be paying you child support and is not doing so, your lawyer can help you negotiate with your child's mother or go to court.
Child support can be a tricky issue. You want to do what is best for your child without feeling taken advantage of. Having an experienced lawyer on your side can help make that happen.