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4 things to know about child support

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2017 | Child Custody |

Now that you and your child’s father have split up, you have to think about how you are going to support yourself and the baby. One thing that you can do is to seek child support from him. This could help you to get the monetary support you need. It might also provide your child with medical care if your ex is required to carry your child on his insurance. There are a few points that you should know if you are going to seek child support.

Act quickly

Child support isn’t something that is retroactive. This means that you can only get child support starting from the date on which you file the petition to get it. You should act quickly because the longer you wait, the longer it will be before you are able to get the help you need. When you file for child support, you should expect to wait 90 to 180 days for the child support order to be issued. This timeframe can be longer if the child’s father is hard to find or if there are any other extenuating circumstances.

Enforcement is possible

If you have a court order for child support payments, you can have that order enforced if the child’s other parent isn’t making payments. There are several things that can happen. The father could be incarcerated for violating a court order, his driver’s license can be suspended, he can have his income tax returns garnished, and he might be subjected to other penalties.

Child support and visitation aren’t connected

The child support order and the visitation or custody order aren’t dependent upon one another. This means that even if your ex isn’t paying child support, you still have to let him see your child in accordance with the child custody order. If you try to withhold your child from him because he isn’t paying child support, you could face legal action. Be sure that you fully understand the child support order and the child custody order so you can remain in compliance with them.

Modifications are possible

Circumstances can change over time. It is possible to seek a child support modification if there are significant changes. This might be the case if your ex gets a new job or gets a raise. If you need to seek a modification, you should make sure that your case qualifies for one. You should petition the court as soon as possible for the modification because modifications aren’t retroactive.