Arlington Child Support Attorney
Helping You Secure the Financial Support Your Child Deserves
When parents separate or divorce, they must still provide for their children. In Texas, child support is typically paid by the noncustodial parent to the custodial parent to help cover the costs of raising the child. The amount of child support is determined by the court and is based on the Texas Child Support Guidelines.
At the Law Office of Mark M. Childress, we understand that child support is a critical issue for both parents. Our Arlington child support lawyer can help you understand your rights and obligations and work to ensure that the child support order is fair and reasonable.
What is Child Support?
In Texas, child support refers to the ongoing financial assistance that a non-custodial parent is legally required to provide to assist in the upbringing and care of their child. It's typically paid by the non-custodial parent (the parent with whom the child doesn't primarily reside) to the custodial parent or caregiver.
Child support in Texas is determined based on state guidelines that consider various factors, such as the income of both parents, the number of children involved, healthcare costs, daycare expenses, and other pertinent factors. The court calculates the amount of child support using these guidelines, aiming to ensure the child's needs are met fairly.
The Texas Family Code establishes the framework for child support obligations, and it's typically enforced through court orders. Both parents are legally obligated to financially support their child, and failure to pay child support can result in legal consequences, such as wage garnishment, suspension of licenses, or other enforcement measures to ensure compliance with the support order.
How is Child Support Calculated in Texas?
Child support is calculated using a formula that takes into account the income of both parents, the number of children, and other factors. The formula is based on the Texas Child Support Guidelines, which are set by the state.
Under the guidelines, the noncustodial parent is typically required to pay:
- 20% of their net monthly income for one child
- 25% of their net monthly income for two children
- 30% of their net monthly income for three children
- 35% of their net monthly income for four children
- 40% of their net monthly income for five or more children
These percentages are subject to change if the noncustodial parent is already supporting other children or if the child has special needs. The court may also deviate from the guidelines if the child has significant medical expenses or if the noncustodial parent has a high income.
Net monthly income is calculated by subtracting the following from the noncustodial parent’s gross monthly income:
- Federal income taxes
- Social Security taxes
- Union dues
- Health insurance premiums
- Retirement contributions
It is important to note that the guidelines only apply to parents who earn up to $9,200 per month. If the noncustodial parent earns more than this, the court will determine the amount of child support based on the child’s needs and the parent’s ability to pay.
How Long Does Child Support Last in Texas?
In Texas, child support typically lasts until the child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever is later. However, if the child is disabled, the court may order the noncustodial parent to continue paying child support indefinitely.
Child support may also end if the child gets married, joins the military, or is emancipated by the court. If the child dies, the noncustodial parent is still required to pay any unpaid child support.
What Happens If the Noncustodial Parent Fails to Pay Child Support?
Child support is a legal obligation, and the noncustodial parent is required to make the payments on time and in full. If the noncustodial parent fails to pay child support, the custodial parent can take legal action to enforce the order.
There are several ways to enforce a child support order in Texas, including:
- Wage garnishment
- Seizing bank accounts
- Intercepting tax refunds
- Suspending the noncustodial parent’s driver’s license
- Suspending the noncustodial parent’s professional license
- Placing a lien on the noncustodial parent’s property
- Reporting the noncustodial parent to the credit bureaus
If the noncustodial parent is significantly behind on child support, they may also face criminal charges. If convicted, they may be sentenced to jail and ordered to pay a fine.
How Can a Child Support Lawyer Help?
Child support is a complex issue, and it is important to have an experienced attorney on your side. At the Law Office of Mark M. Childress, we can help you understand your rights and obligations and work to ensure that the child support order is fair and reasonable.
If you are a custodial parent, we can help you gather the necessary financial information and present it to the court. If you are a noncustodial parent, we can help you ensure that the court has accurate information about your income and expenses.
If you are seeking to modify an existing child support order, we can help you gather the necessary evidence and present it to the court. If you are seeking to enforce a child support order, we can help you take the necessary legal action.
My questions were heard and answered without having to ask twice.
“Value a capable team with experienced staff. For the past 9 months, the folks at the Law Offices of Mark Childress handled my case with class and empathy. My questions were heard and answered without having to ask twice. I felt like I was kept in the loop and always briefed properly. As I move forward with other ventures I wouldn't be surprised if we crossed paths again. And hats off to Konner, THANK YOU!”
Mark was there to answer every question, every phone call and did it in a way that I felt as if I were his only client.
“I needed an attorney who would stand up for me and my child during a very hard time. Mark was there to answer every question, every phone call and did it in a way that I felt as if I were his only client. He was very knowledgeable not only about the law but about the opposing attorney and the judge. He prepared me well and we won our case. I would recommend Mark Childress to anyone who is fighting for custody or in need of child support.”
I highly recommend him and his staff. They are courteous, prompt and they care.
“I called in inquiring about a divorce and how it all happens. I had 2 people call me back within an hour and in an hour maybe 2 I was talking with the lawyer. I highly recommend him and his staff. They are courteous, prompt and they care. Divorce is the hardest thing we will go through minus losing a kid and his team will be retained. He even called me back himself the next day to see how I was. Great service.”
This guy is amazing. In a matter of minutes, he accomplished what no other attorney could in 6 years.
“This guy is amazing. In a matter of minutes, he accomplished what no other attorney could in 6 years. He had my case figured out in 1short conversation and had what he called "a convoluted mess" fixed. I'm pretty sure my ex felt like he'd been hit by a bus. My family is finally in tact and everyone is finally happy.”
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