At Mark Rush Williamson, PC in North Texas, our Dallas divorce attorney has more than 20 years of experience handling child support cases and a thorough knowledge of Texas child support guidelines. That knowledge and experience can benefit you if you are seeking help in a child support matter.
Child Support in Texas: The Basics
You are entitled to a percentage of the other parent's income to support your child if:
- That parent is the non-custodial parent of a child under the age of 18
- That parent is the non-custodial parent of a child who is over the age of 18, and has special needs
Texas Family Code guidelines establish the formula used to determine the amount to be paid each month, but there are exceptions to those guidelines. Deviation from the guidelines can be based on educational needs, additional children supported by the non-custodial parent, and other issues related to extraordinary expenses and special circumstances. Dallas child support attorney Mark Rush Williamson can talk to you about the exceptions and if any apply in your situation.
Child Support Calculations
The Texas Family Code guidelines are used when the parent paying child support makes up to $7,500.00 per month, after taxes are withheld, which is called the parent's 'net resources'. Most other payroll deductions are not allowed in the calculation. Salary, commissions, bonuses, interest and dividend income are all included. In most cases, the judge will apply the following schedule to the first $7,500.00 of monthly income:
1 child 20% of Net Resources
2 children 25% of Net Resources
3 children 30% of Net Resources
4 children 35% of Net Resources
5 children 40% of Net Resources
6 or more children Not less than 40%
Example: If the person paying child support takes home $4,200.00 per month, after taxes, and there are two children to support, monthly child support will be $1,050.00 [$4,200.00 times 25% = $1,050.00].
The parent paying child support is usually obligated to provide health insurance for the children as additional child support. This can be through an employer or a private policy. If the parent who receives child support has the health insurance for the children, then the other parent may have to reimburse the cost to carry the children on that insurance policy.
Child support is usually ordered to be paid until the child reaches age 18 or graduates from high school, whichever is later. If a child is disabled, it is possible to continue child support for an indefinite period, even after age 18. The Family Code has no provision for child support during college or payment of college expenses. However, parents can agree to this kind of support and include it in a divorce decree.
Resolving Disputes Through Mediation
Just like child custody, child support and other divorce-related matters that involve money are usually contentious. Even if you do not need the child support to raise your child/children, you should remember that the money is for the children, not you. You may want to consider getting the support and later turning it over to the child/children for future needs.
At Mark Rush Williamson, PC, we share that view.
Violations of Child Support Orders
He's not paying. You need the money. This is an extremely technical area of practice, prosecuting or defending alleged violations of court ordered child support. You need an attorney with years of experience, either way. Since jail time is a possible outcome, and sometimes large sums of money are involved, do not take chances.
Child Support Modifications
Life can change in the years after a divorce. For example, people can obtain an increase in salary or a decrease in salary. People need to move out of Texas with their child/children due to a job offer. If there has been a change of circumstance that would merit a move away or change in child support, our law firm can help.
For more information, or to schedule an appointment with an experienced child support lawyer, please contact us today at 469.385.3305.