Every child has the right to be financially supported by their parents, and both parents share an equal responsibility to provide that support.
If you need help in either ensuring your child receives the financial assistance they deserve or making sure you don’t pay an excessive amount of support to your child’s custodial parent, the Akron child support attorneys at Slater & Zurz LLP are here to help.
In our over 30 years of successfully handling a wide range of domestic relations matters, we have seen that conflicts over child support and custody are frequently the most challenging and contentious matters in an Ohio legal separation, dissolution, or divorce. We understand the many factors that need to be considered when determining fair and just child support and can help you obtain a favorable outcome by advocating strongly on your behalf.
Take action to ensure your child receives the fair and entitled amount of financial assistance. Consult with one of our top family law attorneys in Akron. We offer you a free consultation to ensure you understand your legal rights and options, allowing you to make an informed decision on how to proceed.
Speak to an Akron, Ohio, child support attorney today. Call (330)762-0700 to arrange a FREE consultation.
Experienced Child Support Attorneys in Akron
Child support is a matter that arises in nearly all family law matters involving minor children. Addressing these issues during a divorce can prove challenging even when you and your spouse are working together. For this reason, it is essential to have a skilled child support attorney on your side to help you understand the process and the options available to you.
Our accomplished legal team at Slater & Zurz LLP recognizes the potential difficulties of establishing Ohio child support. We can anticipate areas of conflict before they present themselves and address the issue quickly and fairly.
Child support issues may arise in domestic relations matters relating to:
- Legal separation
- Dissolution of marriage
- Establishing paternity
- Domestic violence cases
- Guardianship proceedings
- Child custody and parenting time
- Modification of an existing child support order
How Child Support Is Determined in Akron
Child support is a series of payments made by a non-residential parent to the residential parent (the parent with whom the child resides the majority of the time.) It is meant to assist with the financial needs of the child. Child support is generally established in paternity cases, separation, dissolution, divorce, or cases where the parents are unmarried. Determining child support is handled on the state level, where each state has enacted specific guidelines for child support calculations.
Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code 3319.021, Ohio uses a modified “income shares” model to calculate child support payments. This method ensures that both the residential and non-residential parent financially contribute to their child’s upbringing in proportion to each parent’s income. It is designed to align with the idea that a child is entitled to the same level of financial resources they would have had if their parents had remained in their relationship or marriage.
Before July of 2018, Ohio courts followed the basic income shares model. However, this model did not account for higher-income families or families who establish a shared parenting arrangement. Fortunately, House Bill 366 was signed into law in 2018, establishing a modified income shares model that adequately addressed these special circumstances.
Although the model is in place, Ohio courts have the right to deviate from the guidelines detailed in ORC 3119.021. Factors that can lead to a deviation include:
- The amount of time the child resides with each parent
- A child’s special needs
- The family’s standard of living before the separation or divorce
- The non-residential parent’s ability to pay
- Special needs of either parent
For a general estimate of your or your child’s other parent’s support obligation, you can use the following Ohio child support calculator.
Income Used to Calculate Akron Child Support
When calculating child support payments, Ohio courts compare the financial information of one parent to that of the other parent. Calculations include the following income and expenses:
- Overtime pay
- Bonuses, commission, and tips
- Workers’ compensation benefits
- Disability benefits
- Severance pay
- Rental income
- Spousal support payments
- Income taxes
- Child care expenses
- Health insurance premiums
- Child support orders for other minor children
- Certain employment expenses, such as mandatory union dues or retirement contributions
Modifying an Existing Child Support Order in Akron
Parents and judges try to consider future changes when establishing a child support order. Though even with careful planning, unanticipated changes frequently arise, creating the need to modify an existing child support order.
If there has been a significant change in your child’s needs or the financial situation of either you or your child’s other parent, you may wish to modify the amount of support you receive or pay. To do so, you can ask the Ohio Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) or the Akron domestic relations court for a child support modification.
Learn more about child support in Akron. Call (330) 762-0700 today to arrange a FREE consultation.
CSEA Child Support Modification
If it has been at least 36 months since your last child support order or review, or it has been less than 36 months, but your circumstances have changed considerably, you can request a CSEA review. During a CSEA administrative review, a caseworker looks at the change in circumstances as well as the financial information of both parents to determine if a child support modification is appropriate.
To begin the process, you must complete and sign a CSEA administrative review request form. Next, you will need to gather the necessary documents, such as those that prove your eligibility for a review and those that will show the CSEA your circumstances have changed.
Once you submit the form and required documents, a caseworker will notify you of any additional financial documents needed in order to complete the review. Once he or she receives all necessary documentation, they will review your case and issue a recommendation to either modify the current order or leave it unchanged.
If both parties agree with the CSEA’s recommendation, the changes will become the new order.
Court-ordered Child Support Modification
The other way to have your child support order changed is to file a motion with the court. The motion will need to be filed with the same court that issued the original order.
If you wish to ask the court to review your current child support order, you must complete the paperwork and explain your change of circumstances. Once you file the necessary paperwork at your local Domestic Relations or Juvenile court, the other party will need to be served. Lastly, the court will notify you of your hearing date, which you will need to attend. If the court feels a modification is warranted after listening to your situation, they will issue a new child support order.
Courts have more discretion when it comes to deviating from the Ohio child support guidelines. However, the process can be more complicated. That is why we recommend hiring an experienced Akron child support lawyer to ensure you obtain the best possible resolution.
Qualified Child Support Lawyers in Akron
If you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are encountering challenges in determining a fair child support arrangement, you can rely on the experience and resources of the Akron family law attorney at Slater & Zurz LLP. We can offer our expert guidance through every step of the process, ensuring you obtain the resolution you need, and your child deserves.
Our attorneys believe the most favorable resolution is one reached using alternative conflict resolution methods. However, if an arrangement that aligns with your goals cannot be achieved using these methods, we will not hesitate to take the matter to court and fight aggressively on your behalf. We will do everything within our power to obtain a fair and amicable resolution, so you and your family can put this matter behind you and move on to the next chapter of your lives.
To get started, we welcome you to contact our firm to schedule your FREE, confidential consultation with Akron’s leading child support lawyers. You can reach us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by contacting us online or calling (330) 762-0700.