When a marriage is over, a Texas parent still has to maintain his or her financial obligation to the children, even if that parent does not have custody of the kids. One way to ensure that the children have what they need is to get child support, which are payments made to the custodial parent to go toward the basic needs of the kids. The amount that the supporting parent may have to pay depends on details specific to the individual situation.
Whether you are the supporting parent or the parent who has primary custody of the kids, it is in your interest to understand how child support works. You will also benefit from knowing what factors determine how much one may have to pay. This understanding can help both parents make their post-divorce parenting relationship work smoothly, lowering the chance of confusion and disputes.
The calculation of child support
Child support is critical. A divorce can bring about significant economic inequity between parents, and paying child support can ensure that the children have what they need for clothes, childcare, education needs, food, recreational activities and more. The amount that the supporting parent will have to pay depends on a calculation of various factors, including income, the needs of the children, other kids the parent must support and more. You and the other parent have the option to create a child support order that works best for your family.
Child support orders are not permanently set in stone. There is an option to seek a modification of an existing order if the current terms are no longer realistic. A supporting parent may seek a change to the terms of an order in situations involving job loss, the changing needs of the kids, the birth of new children and other factors. Parents may agree to a change out of court, but it is prudent to follow the appropriate legal steps to formalize a modification.
The best interests of the children
The intent of any child support order is to protect the best interests of the children above all else. Parents will benefit from learning more about how they can support their kids while protecting their own rights by seeking guidance at the earliest stages of the divorce process. As a parent, you can pursue terms that will allow you to care for your kids in a way that is sustainable and reasonable for you.