Akron Child Support Lawyer
With the rising costs of living in Ohio and the quickly increasing cost of childcare, receiving your child’s much-needed support payments is crucial in providing your child with what they need to thrive. Similarly, making sure you are paying the correct amount of child support is essential as excessively high child support can quickly become a significant financial burden.
Although courts do their best, they don’t always get it right. They often can’t anticipate future changes in the child’s needs or the parent’s financial circumstances.
Because establishing child support or defending against a support determination is such a sensitive issue among parents, hiring the right attorney to represent you in this matter is of utmost importance.
The child support lawyers at Slater & Zurz have helped families resolve issues relating to child support and other family law matters for over 40 years. We understand the emotional and financial toll these cases bring. But we believe approaching the issue with honesty, integrity, and compassion is the key to obtaining a successful resolution for our clients and their families.
If you need legal assistance in resolving child support, child custody, or other family law-related matters in Akron, Canton, or Cleveland, Ohio, we encourage you to contact our firm. Our family law attorneys will answer all of your questions and determine the next steps in getting you and your family the result you need.
Call 330.762.0700 or contact us online to set up your FREE, confidential consultation with an Ohio child support lawyer.
The Purpose of Child Support
Child support ensures that a child’s living standard is maintained and that their needs are covered. It also ensures that parents are contributing financially to the upbringing of their children. Child support is intended to cover the areas listed below.
Child support is used to pay for the child’s basic necessities, including food, shelter, and clothing.
Education expenses can range from tuition, school supplies, books, school uniforms, and tutoring.
This includes costs associated with daycare, babysitters, nannies, and afterschool programs.
Many parents don’t realize child support covers transportation expenses. However, basic costs are accounted for, such as car insurance, gas, and car maintenance.
In Ohio, child support orders require cash medical support regardless of whether health insurance is provided.
These are considered any regular activities that take place outside of regular school hours. Examples of extracurricular activities include sports, summer camps, and music and dance lessons.
Child support orders also cover basic entertainment for the child. This includes age-appropriate toys, plays, and movies. Parents may also use child support to pay for internet and cable if the child uses these services.
Child Support in Ohio
In Ohio, both parents are equally responsible for providing for the financial needs of their children.
When one parent is granted sole physical custody of the child, generally only one parent is ordered to pay support. Because the custodial parent (the one with who the child resides) is assumed to spend money directly on the child’s day-to-day care, the non-custodial parent is typically the one responsible for making child support payments.
When parents have a shared parenting arrangement, parents may or may not have to pay support. Shared parenting is rarely divided equally, meaning the child spends just as much time residing with one parent as they do with the other. And rarely do both parents earn the same income. In most cases, the parent with the higher income will pay at least some child support to the parent who earns less, though the courts will look at each parent’s percentage of physical custody when determining support.
Arrange a FREE consultation with an Ohio child support lawyer today. Call 330.762.0700 or fill out this form.
Calculating Child Support
Courts aim to make a child support determination that supports and ensures the best interests of the child. To do this, Ohio courts calculate child support by following the guidelines set forth by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. These guidelines compare the income and expense information of one parent and compare it to the financial information of the other parent. Income includes:
- Overtime pay
- Workers’ compensation
- Retirement benefits
- Unemployment benefits
- Severance pay
Expenses included in the child support guidelines include:
- Child care expenses
- Health insurance premiums
- Income taxes
- Certain employer required expenses
- Spousal support amounts
- Pre-existing orders for child support
Challenging a Child Support Order
Judges do their best to take everything into consideration when calculating child support. Although the guidelines are generally fair and accurate, there are times when other factors may cause a deviation from the support amount established by the guidelines. The courts may decide to adjust the amount of child support based on any of the following factors:
- A child’s special emotional, physical, or educational needs
- A parent’s financial obligations for other minor children
- The costs associated with extended parenting time
- A parent’s court-ordered payments
- Any extraordinary expenses related to parenting time
- The child’s financial resources
- An imbalance of income between the two parents
- The financial benefits a parent receives as a result of remarrying or sharing expenses with another person
- The parents’ special needs
- A parent’s responsibility to support others
- The tax obligation of either parent
- Any extraordinary work-related expenses incurred by either parent
- The education opportunities or standard of living that would have been available to the child had the parents remained together
How to Modify Child Support in Ohio
Once a child support order is established, there is always the chance that either the parents’ or the child’s circumstances change. If you feel the amount of child support you receive or pay should be changed, you can request a child support modification. In Ohio, there are two ways to have child support modified. You can either request a review by the Ohio Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) or file a motion in court. To find out which option may best suit your situation, we recommend speaking with one of our qualified child support modification attorneys.
For help with a child support matter, call now to schedule a FREE consultation with an experienced child support attorney. 330.762.0700