Child support is money that one parent pays to another in order to meet their child’s needs. While support is used to help cover day-to-day child-related expenses, it can also include money for medical, dental, and other health care as well as child-care expenses and school expenses. The parent who is not living with the child (i.e. the non-custodial parent) is the one who typically provides the support. While two individuals can work out a financial agreement on their own in regard to meeting their child’s financial needs, child support is only required to be paid once a court orders the support.
If you are living in Alabama and are seeking child support from your child’s other parent, a child support lawyer can help you understand how the support process works and can even assist you with getting the required paperwork filed to initiate the process. If you would like to discuss applying for child support with a lawyer in your city, contact Hill, Gossett, Kemp & Hufford, P.C. at one of their office locations listed down below.
Getting a child support order in Alabama
When a child support order request has been filed with the court, which is something an Alabama child support lawyer can help you with, the court shall use the Alabama Child Support Guidelines to ensure the order is fair. The court shall use both parents’ monthly gross income, daycare expenses, health insurance costs, etc. to determine how much a child should receive in support. When certain circumstances exist, the court may deviate from the guidelines it typically uses. Some of the reasons for the deviation include:
- “Shared physical custody or visitation rights providing for periods of physical custody or care of children by the obligor parent substantially in excess of those customarily approved or ordered by the court.”
- “Extraordinary costs of transportation for purposes of visitation borne substantially by one parent.”
- “Expenses of college education incurred prior to a child’s reaching the age of majority.”
- “Assets of, or unearned income received by or on behalf of, a child or children.”
- Child-care expenses a parent incurs if they have to undergo training or education in order to obtain a job or enhance their earning potential.
How is child support determined in Alabama?
Child support is determined by adding the basic child-support obligation, work-related child- care costs, and health-care-coverage costs. The total of all of this shall then be divided between the parents in accordance with their adjusted gross incomes. The parent who earns more will typically be required to pay more in order to meet their child’s needs. The number of children and the amount of time each parent spends with them will also play a role in determining how much each parent is expected to put toward their child’s needs.
In cases of split custody where each parent has primary physical custody of one or more of their children, the Child Support Guidelines says that support shall be computed as follows:
- The court would first compute the amount of child support the father would owe to the mother for the children while in her custody.
- The court would then compute the amount of child support the mother would owe to the father for the children when they are in his custody.
- The lesser amount would be subtracted from the greater. The parent who owes the greater obligation would then be ordered to pay the difference in child support to the other parent, that is, unless the court decides to deviate from the guidelines.
It is important to keep in mind that each child support order is unique as it is based on how much each parent is earning, what the child’s needs are, and what custody arrangements have been established.
Should I hire a child support attorney in Alabama if I’m seeking child support?
In today’s day and age, most people are working full-time jobs which means they have little time to figure out how they can obtain the child support that they need and are entitled to receive. If you would like a legal expert to help you initiate the process who will also be there to handle any issues as they arise, you’re going to want to contact Alabama child support attorney James Hill for help.
Disclaimer: No representation is made that quality of legal services provided is greater than the quality of legal services provided by other attorneys.
Hill, Gossett, Kemp & Hufford, P.C. can be reached at:
2603 Moody Parkway, Suite 200
Moody, Alabama 35004
Phone: (205) 640-2000
7900 Parkway Drive
Leeds, AL 35094
Phone: (205) 699-5500
6441 U.S. Highway 11 Springville,
Phone: (205) 467-2225