Child Support by Court Order
Because New York family law states that a child should be supported by both parents, child support can be ordered by the court. If your children are going without support from an estranged parent, or if you have received notice of child support claims against you, engaging a child support attorney can provide guidance in navigating this process.
Let’s discuss what a child support order means, how it is created and enforced, and how to resolve obstacles or disagreements during this process.
What Is Child Support by Court order?
A child support order is the legal means by which a family court judge documents the requirement to pay child support and in what amount. A support order establishes the right of the state to pursue child support enforcement actions if the parties do not abide by the terms of the court order.
What Is Included in a Court Order for Child Support?
Following state guidelines, the court order will outline the details and responsibilities of the parents regarding financial support. These elements will likely be part of a New York State child support order:
• Confirmation of parental status, usually by paternity testing, birth certificate, or voluntary acknowledgment of parenthood
• Identifying the children who require support
• Evaluation of the parents’ ability to pay
• Establishing which parent will pay support to the other
• Outlining the details of payment, including method, amount, and frequency
• Establishing penalties for violation of the support order which may include wage garnishment and additional fines
How Is a Child Support Court Order Established?
There are typically three ways that the state determines child support by court order is necessary. These include:
As Part of a Divorce Proceeding
Along with determining child custody, property division, and responsibility for marital debts, the divorce order will usually establish child support. If there is an existing prenuptial agreement, this will be taken into account, but the court must approve any agreements between the parents.
A prenuptial agreement definition of child support may not meet state minimums, so it must be reviewed during the process. The requirements to get custody of a child are also determined by state guidelines.
By Request of an Unmarried Parent
When the parents were never formally married, the custodial parent may petition for child support by court order. Once parenthood is established, the process moves forward according to state requirements.
When Assistance Services Are Utilized
When a single parent applies for public assistance, the government agency involved may notify the appropriate authorities that child support is not being received. The Child Support Agency may file on behalf of the child.
Resolving Obstacles in Establishing Child Support by Court Order
A New York state law known as the Child Support Standard Act (CSSA) has established a clear formula for child support which will be followed in most cases.1 There are, however, many unique situations that might bring you to a family law attorney:
• If the non-custodial parent resides in another state, the laws of that state may apply in the resulting court order for support.1
• If the proceedings take a long time to complete, the child support order is often backdated to the date of the initial request.
• If the whereabouts of a parent are unknown, child support agencies will provide assistance in locating them.
When You Need Guidance About New York Child Support Orders
Many times, it is helpful to have an experienced child support attorney on your side during this process. Obtaining a fair and equitable support order starts with presenting the request or response in a way the family court will accept.
If you need help navigating the child support process in New York, schedule a consultation with Joseph A. Ledwidge PC. In Jamaica, Queens, and our other locally placed offices, you will find a compassionate advocate to guide you to resolution.
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