Child Support Lawyer in Rochester, NY
Experienced Rochester Child Support Lawyer Helping You Understand Your Rights To Financial Support
Child support is one of the most important aspects of any family law case in New York. Child support payments are used to provide for the children when the parents no longer live together. We take support cases very seriously. Just like you, we want what is best for your children, and we are here to help.
If you need help with a child support case, contact an experienced Rochester child support lawyer at our firm for a confidential phone consultation today.
Who Can Collect Child Support Payments?
The custodial parent is eligible for child support to help raise the child. If the parents have shared custody of the child, one parent still might be entitled to child support if the other parent makes substantially more money.
Some cases involve unmarried parents. If the mother is the custodial parent, the father might deny paternity to avoid paying child support. A paternity test might be needed to establish paternity. The court can order a DNA test to ensure that the man is the father. If he is, he will have to pay child support.
The father can also request a paternity test to establish paternity. This is done to get visitation or custody rights.
How Are Child Support Payments Calculated?
Parents have two options for creating an order for support. First, they can go through mediation and create an agreement. The Cimino Law Firm can act as a neutral mediator in these cases. Once the order is completed, the law firm can submit it to the court to make it official. Then the noncustodial parent will begin making payments.
Second, parents can let the courts decide. The court uses a formula for determining the amount of support. The court combines the income of both parents. When the income falls below $148,000 a year, it multiplies it by a percentage based on the number of children. It is 17 percent for one child, 25 percent for two, 29 percent for three, and 31 percent for four. If the parents have five or more children, the percentage is 35 percent or more. This is considered the yearly cost of raising the children.
Then the court splits the amount between both parents to determine how much each person should pay. If a noncustodial parent makes 30 percent of the combined pay, he or she will be expected to pay 30 percent of the costs. If he or she makes 70 percent of the income, he or she will be expected to pay 70 percent of the costs and so on.
If the combined pay is greater than $148,000, the courts have some leeway determining child support. The court can use the same formula or its own. It can also choose to use the method for income below the income cap. That means the extra income will not be considered for the child support order.
With so many complexities, it’s wise to hire a family law attorney. Even though the state uses a percentage, other factors, such as private school and medical conditions, can be taken into account. Having proper representation is critical during this process.
What Are Temporary Orders?
Parents can also get temporary child support orders when going through a divorce. This order allows the custodial parent to receive payments while the divorce is pending. Judges often use the standard formula when determining temporary orders. The interim order can be made permanent once the divorce is finalized.
However, those with temporary orders still have the right to negotiate child support payments through mediation. If that occurs, the interim order will not become permanent. Instead, once the divorce is finalized, the court will accept the agreed-upon order. Then that will become the final order for child support.
Can You Appeal An Order?
Those who choose to go to court and are unhappy with the order have the chance to appeal it. To do so, the dissatisfied party must file an objection with the court within 30 days of the ruling.
The judge has three options when a parent objects to a support order. He or she can change the ruling, send it back to the court, or leave it as it is. Either party has the right to appeal the judge’s decision to a higher court.
Can You Modify A Child Support Order?
It is possible to modify a child support order if you or the child’s other parent has experienced a significant change in circumstances. Modifications can increase or decrease the amount of support paid, depending on the situation.
Examples of significant changes in circumstances include:
- Job loss
- Serious illness
- Job promotion
- Loss of housing
The person who wishes to modify the agreement must prove the circumstances require a new order. This could include providing wage statements or medical information to the courts.
How Long Do Child Support Orders Last?
In most cases, child support orders last until the child is 21 years of age. However, if the child is emancipated before reaching 21, the order will be terminated. This occurs if the child joins the military, is married, or self-supporting. Also, if the child is between the ages of 17 and 21 and chooses to leave home and fails to obey the parents, the order is discontinued.
How Do You Collect Unpaid Child Support?
Only 43.5 percent of custodial parents received the full amount of child support due in 2015. While some of the remaining custodial parents received at least some of the payments, some parents don’t receive anything. Failing to pay child support is against the law, and you can take action to receive your money.
Your lawyer can help you collect the money owed through a court order. The court might choose to seize the noncustodial parent’s bank account or garnish his or her wages. The judge also might place a lien on the nonpayer’s home, take his or her tax returns, or suspend the person’s license. Through this route, you can receive back child support payments and current payments as well.
Choosing The Right Rochester Child Support Lawyer
If you aren’t properly represented during your child support hearing, you will be at the mercy of the court. You might end up paying more than you can afford or not getting the payment you need to raise your child adequately. While the court uses a formula, it considers other factors. Your lawyer can help you pay or receive a fair amount in child support. Also, a lawyer can help with collecting and modifying support payments,
Michelle Cimino of The Cimino Law Firm has more than 20 years of family law experience. She has helped mothers and fathers with child support over the years and can help you as well.
Our firm makes it easy to get started. We offer a confidential phone consultation so you can discuss your case. You will go over your needs and concerns, and learn the strategy for moving forward. Then we will invite you to visit our office in Rochester or Webster, New York. You can meet with a family law attorney in person, provide evidence, and get started with your case.
Child support is an emotional topic for parents. We understand that you are worried about your financial future and the well-being of your children. Our compassion will put you at ease, and our 20+ years of experience will give you confidence that you have an advocate who will fight hard for you and your child.
Contact us today to schedule your confidential phone consultation with attorney Michelle Cimino and let her 20+ years of experience work for you.
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