Child Support Laws

The rights and responsibilities of parents in providing support to their children have been internationally recognised.  The upbringing and development of a child is a fundemental right and a primary reponsibility of the parents. 

How it works:

Under family law, child support is an ongoing and mandated payment that is made by one parent to the other for the benefit of the child – when the parents divorce or end their relationship.  Child support has to he paid directly to the custodial parent or guardian. 

Most of the laws governing this aspect of child welfare come under the purview of individual states.  Child support forms an integral part of a divorce or dissolution of marriage decree handed down by a family court judge.

There is no doubt that both parents are obligated to support their children financially even when they are not living under the same roof.  Child support covers only the financial aspect and not other forms such as emotional and spiritual support or even physical care.

The financial earning capacity of the parents determines the amount to be paid towards child support.  The amount is determined either by a formula to estimate the amount or on a case by case basis – the costs encompass items like clothing, food, education, medical coverage etc.

Other Issues:

Issues like child support and visitation are totally separate and enforceable individually in quite a few jurisdictions across the US.  Parents with custody cannot keep the other from contacting the child – as a form of punishment for nonpayment of support.

Of course, even if the parent paying the child support may be barred from seeing the child altogether – depending on extenuating circumstances.  Parents are also required to pay child support if it has been mandated by the courts even if they do not want any relationship with the child.

How to obtain Child Support:

Laws vary from state to state and in most cases, legal intervention is not necessary.  Quite a few parents have informal agreements where expenses are taken care of, by the non-custodial parent.  In other cases, if the courts have involved, then both parties have to follow the terms and conditions set down by the judge.

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