Michigan child support payments: How much should you pay? How long should you pay it? Are you getting enough child support? Can you change the amount of child support?
Get accurate answers to these and any other questions you may have, from an attorney with the experience and background to provide them.
Without a Michigan child support attorney in your corner to advise you, you may either be receiving too little child support or paying too much. Your situation may have changed, or some important factor may not have been raised when the child support payments were calculated.
If you live in Southeast Michigan in Oakland, Livingston, Macomb, Lapeer, Genesee or Wayne County, contact me for Michigan child support help.
Child Support Formula for Residents of Auburn Hills, Troy, Rochester and Oakland County
In Michigan, both parents are responsible for the support of their children. The court will generally order child support payments, even if both parents share custody.
Michigan law requires that a mathematical formula, also know as the statewide Child Support Guideline, be used by the courts when determining child support payment amounts.
I work closely with families every day in the matter of child support. I use the statewide formula with dedicated computer software to estimate the support levels for each couple's unique case. The Michigan formula is occasionally updated, and we are able to help our clients significantly, as we stay current with Michigan legislature.
What Factors Determine Michigan Child Support?
There are many elements that are put into the mathematical formula used to evaluate child support payments. As you can imagine, each element is shaped by many variables… so meticulous attention must be paid to the accuracy of each item. Mistakes in this area can negatively affect the final child support payment orders.
Evidence taken by the court to feed into the formula includes
- The net income of each parent
- The potential income, or earning capacity, of each parent
- Child custody orders
- Any additional child support arrangements (such as from a previous marriage)
- Alimony and spousal support
- Cost of general child care
- Cost of the child's health care
Child Support Modification
The amount of child support payments can be modified as the child's needs or parent's ability to pay change. Parents have the right to request a review of the support amount when either parent's financial circumstances change.
A request to modify child support is handled through the Friend of the Court (FOC) office. You must provide evidence that at least one parent's economic circumstances have changed. The FOC reviews the support amount and decides whether or not it should be modified. If they agree, the FOC files a motion that requests the court to change the support amount. Only the court that issued the child support order may modify the order.
There are also times when you wish to ask the court to change the support order immediately. In this case, your attorney would file a motion asking for immediate modification.
How Long Do Michigan Child Support Payments Last?
Unlike spousal support, which usually stops when the spouse receiving it remarries, the duty to support one's children usually is not affected by either party's remarriage.
The obligation to support a child ends only when the child reaches the age of 18, unless the child has yet to complete high school and still lives with the custodial parent. In this event, support payments continue until the child graduates high school or reaches 19½ years of age.
Parents may also agree to continue support payments through a child's college education, and this agreement would be enforced by the court.
Our Oakland, Michigan family law firm helps clients pursue the interests and security of their children. I will provide specific child support advice and representation for your special circumstances, whether you need to prepare and file motions for child support modification, or if you are the custodial parent and are in need of support from the other parent. Call today – 248.608.4123 – to speak with Michigan child support attorney Cameron Goulding.