When parents are unable to reach an agreement on child support, they may need to appear before a judge. The judge will determine the amount of money a parent owes, which may help or hurt one’s finances. Therefore, it is important to be prepared for a child support hearing. Preparation and legal counsel can help a parent obtain the best possible outcome.
Factors that Influence Child Support
It is important for parents to be informed about the factors that influence child support prior to a hearing. This information gives parents an idea of how much child support they should expect to receive or pay. This will allow parents to determine if an amount is considered fair or unreasonable.
Child support is dependent on the amount of money each spouse earns. Therefore, if the paying spouse has a low income, then the amount of child support may be lower than average. If the receiving spouse suspects that the paying spouse is lying about their income, the judge may determine the amount the spouse could possibly earn. This number is based off several relevant factors, including education and previous employment.
Child Support Hearing Preparation Tips
In order to be prepared, both parents should stay informed about the status of the hearing. To accomplish this task, parents should read every piece of mail pertaining to the case. This may include mail from involved lawyers, the court, or other relevant parties. After reading documents, it is important to respond to any requests within the allotted time period.
On the day of the hearing, it is crucial that the parents are on time and prepared with relevant materials. Regardless of excuses, being late or absent will ultimately impact the judge’s opinion of the parent. This could negatively impact one’s outcome in the case. Ultimately, it is encouraged that each parent show up to the hearing early.
During the hearing, parents can present factual evidence of their finances. Maintaining honesty is a crucial part of obtaining the best possible legal outcome in a case. Therefore, lying about finances will only land a spouse in trouble and present a negative image to the judge. It is also important that each parent maintains a realistic expectation of the amount of child support they will receive or pay.