3 Events That Will Not Typically Affect Child Support

Posted on: 29 January 2016

When a divorce is finalized and there are children involved, the court will typically require the non-custodial parent to pay child support to the custodial parent. This money is designed to help the custodial parent support the children financially, and it must typically be paid until the children are between the ages of 18 to 21. There are reasons the court will modify the amount a parent pays, such as a change of income with one parent, but there are also three main events that will not have any effects on the amount the court sets for child support.

Filing for Bankruptcy

If you or your ex-spouse files for bankruptcy, it will not change the child support amount the non-custodial parent pays. Bankruptcy is designed to help a person get out of debt, but it cannot typically be used to wipe out child support arrearage. If you are the parent who pays child support, filing for bankruptcy will not really affect you in any way. If you are the parent who receives child support payments, you can also file without it affecting you in any way.

When a non-custodial parent files for bankruptcy and owes back child support, this could be a good opportunity for the custodial parent to take action to get the arrearage. If bankruptcy helps eliminate the debts your ex-spouse owes, he or she may have a little more cash to use to catch up on the payments.

You could use this to your benefit by requesting the court to garnish his wages. If the court agrees, there is a chance they will increase the weekly amount temporarily to ensure that he or she catches up on the payments.

Remarriage of One Parent

Remarriage is another event that will not affect child support in any way. If you get remarried and are the parent paying child support, the court will not take your new spouse's income into consideration when calculating child support. The same is true for a spouse that collects child support. The court cannot look at your new spouse's income and use it to help the other parent pay less in child support.

The income of new spouses does not matter to the courts, and this is primarily because a step parent does not have a legal right to financially support a child that is not his or hers. Financial support for a child is strictly the responsibility of the parents of the child, including parents that have legally adopted the children they have.

Custodial Parent Has a Child

The third event that would not impact the amount of child support a non-custodial parent pays is when the custodial parent has another child that is from a different father. If you are paying child support and your ex has another child, you will not have to worry about paying extra to support this other child, because the child is not yours.

There is a flip side to this situation, though. If a non-custodial parent that pays child support has a child, his or her child support obligation could go down. This parent now has another child to support, and this event could be used to modify the amount of child support he or she is paying. This is often only the case if this parent is required to pay child support to a different parent for the new child he or she has.

When you get divorced and have children, one of you will have to pay child support. If you have any questions about the amount you pay or receive, you should make an appointment with a divorce lawyer today. 


answers to legal questions about child custody

Child custody cases are difficult for the families, the lawyers and judges involved. Finding the best solution to a difficult problem while protecting the kids from as much emotional distress as possible isn't something that anyone ever wants to be a part of. Unfortunately, many marriages end badly and the parents have to come up with a custody plan that will be most efficient for the kids and the rest of the family. My blog is all about the legal aspects of child custody cases. You will find the answers to many of the questions that you have about the most difficult thing you will ever have to go through.