If you are taking care of children, the other spouse nearly always pays child support. Setting the amount is generally a matter of applying a formula, although there are some deviations in some circumstances. Collecting and enforcing child support in Salt Lake City can be an entirely different matter. As financial and family situations change, the child support award may have to change as well.
My name is Melvin A. Cook and I am a Salt Lake City child support attorney. I understand child support is really an ongoing matter. Once we set the correct amount, we must make sure the obligor pays. If circumstances change later, we must be prepared to go back to court and have the orders changed. I have a financial background and understand the importance of a steady, reliable income stream. I always do my best to help make sure that you have the money you need when you need it.
Utah family law courts use a calculation to determine the child support amount. The calculator considers the number of children, the monthly incomes of the mother and father, the amount of time each parent actually spends with each child and a few other factors. Sometimes I see parents attempt to reduce their child support obligation through intentional unemployment or underemployment — a corporate executive suddenly deciding to become a janitor or to stop working altogether would be a good indication of this. Courts do not allow these shenanigans.
The courts prefer that the obligor take the affirmative responsibility to pay what is owed, but they can impose a wage garnishment or wage-withholding order, if necessary. Actually, some of my clients prefer the latter method, as it is may be more reassuring than waiting for checks and can be easily verified. If the parents have been separated for quite some time, or if the obligor falls behind on support payments, the court may increase the periodic payments, order a lump-sum payment or order a combination of both.
If your divorce decree is at least three years old, modification is relatively straightforward. According to Utah Code 78B-12-210, you must show that there is a difference of at least 10 percent between the amount ordered and the guideline amount and that the difference is not temporary.
If it has been less than three years, modification is more difficult, but not impossible. The same code section requires a showing of a material change in circumstances, which may include a change in one of the following:
Child support typically ends at age 18 or upon graduation from high school. In some circumstances, courts extend the child support to help pay for college.
Child support is not designed to be a burden on anyone or a weapon in court. Child support helps you give a better lifestyle to your children, which is what all parents ultimately want for them. Contact a Salt Lake City Child Support Attorney from the Law Office of Mel A. Cook at 801.746.5075 or online to schedule your free consultation. Hablo Español.
When it comes the family law and social security disability, each client and case is different. It is also important to select an attorney with the experience, skills and professionalism required to address your legal issues. To learn more, contact the Salt Lake City law offices of Melvin A. Cook and schedule an initial consultation to discuss your case.