Rockland County Child Support Lawyer
As a parent, it’s your legal duty, your moral responsibility, and for most people your earnest desire, to support your children financially. Beyond providing for the basic necessities of life such as food, shelter, clothing, and medical care, supporting your children can include providing for their educational and extracurricular needs and enrichment as well. The legal duty to support your children financially doesn’t depend on whether you are married, divorced, or never married in the first place.
A child’s mother and father are both responsible for financial support, and when necessary, such as in a divorce or paternity proceeding, a court can order one parent to pay monthly support to the other parent to make sure the children are properly supported. If you are a parent being asked to pay child support, or if you are taking custody of the children and want to ensure your kids will be properly taken care of, The Law Office of Robert S. Sunshine, P.C. can help ensure that you and your children are being treated fairly and that you are not being taken advantage when it comes to payment of support. Contact our experienced Rockland County child support lawyer today to discuss your needs and goals and find out how we can help.
How Will Child Support Get Decided in My Rockland County Divorce Case?
Whenever court-ordered child support is at issue, such as in a divorce, paternity case, or child custody dispute, the courts will first turn to a standard guideline to calculate a monthly amount based on the noncustodial parent’s adjusted gross income (AGI) and the number of children needing to be supported. After making certain deductions from gross income, the parent’s AGI is multiplied by a percentage according to the number of children involved:
- 17% for one child
- 25% for two children
- 29% for three children
- 31% for four children
- at least 35% for five or more children
Other expenses are then added to this amount to come up with the basic child support amount. Expenses that are added in include the noncustodial parent’s share of medical expenses, educational expenses, and child care. If you know these amounts, you can estimate what the child support award will likely be.
Depending on the parent’s financial picture, the child’s expenses, and the parent’s motivation to pay as much or as little support as they can, the process of calculating child support can be difficult to accomplish. For instance, if the parent is unemployed or underemployed, it might be necessary to impute an income to them for the purpose of calculating child support, based on their earning capacity. If the parent is self-employed or has complex assets or income, such as deferred compensation, stock options, business ownership or real estate investment property, then expertise is needed to make sure the parent is reporting income (and debts) fully and accurately.
As a Founding Member of the American Academy for Certified Financial Litigators, attorney Robert Sunshine is specially trained in how to deal with money matters in divorce litigation. If you think your co-parent is hiding assets or overreporting or underreporting income to gain an unfair advantage, The Law Office of Robert S. Sunshine, P.C. can help ensure that you and your children are treated fairly. We represent parents on both sides of the child support dispute and can expertly guide you through the process of calculating child support in a Rockland County divorce. Additionally, if you or your child’s other parent thinks the child support amount is unjust or inappropriate, we can represent you in a motion to the court to deviate up or down from the guidelines. These are contested matters that our skilled, experienced and specially trained litigator can ably handle on your behalf.
How Long Does the Child Support Obligation Last?
Typically, child support, including health insurance coverage, is owed until the child turns 21. For children with disabilities, the court can order child support up to age 26. Child support can also be terminated before the child turns 21 in certain situations, such as if the child gets married, enlists in military service, or becomes self-supporting and is considered “emancipated.” If you feel child support should be ended, extended or modified based on changed circumstances, our office can answer your questions and effectively represent your interests and those of your children.
Contact The Law Office of Robert S. Sunshine, P.C. Today
The Law Office of Robert S. Sunshine, P.C. is ready to help with the vital issue of child support in your New York divorce, paternity proceeding, or child custody dispute. Call our experienced Rockland County child support lawyer today.