Every Child Deserves Emotional And Financial Support
Child support is not alimony. A parent ordered to pay child support in a divorce judgment or because of a paternity ruling should recognize it as meeting the child’s needs, not to support the custodial parent. On the other side of the coin, a custodial parent receiving child support payments does not have the right to withhold parenting time based on when the check arrives in the mail.
At Benske Family Law, in Milwaukee, our lawyers believe that every child deserves his or her parents’ support – both emotional and financial. The state of Wisconsin has established a set of child support guidelines based on factors that include the income of both parents. Many of our divorce and paternity clients ask whether the amount can be increased or decreased. The truth is, Wisconsin family court judges rarely deviate from the state child support guidelines.
What Is Your Attorney’s Role?
Child support is dependent upon your child custody and placement arrangement. The guidelines take into consideration:
- The gross income of both parents
- The amount of time each parent spends with the child
- Other support obligations already in place
- Health insurance coverage and special health care needs of the child
- Special needs for education
As your lawyers, we will protect your rights by making sure the courts enter accurate financial information regarding income, debt and other factors that may affect the final calculation. We will advise the judge on additional factors that should be considered, so that the proper amount of support is being paid and that health insurance and dependency exemptions are taken into consideration.
Modifying Original Child Support Orders In Wisconsin
If you pay child support and your financial or family situation has changed, or if you receive child support and your child’s financial needs have changed, you may be able to seek a modification of support. As your child support lawyers, we will work to prove that circumstances have changed and therefore a child support modification is needed.
Enforcement Of Orders And Defense For Those Behind On Child Support
Wisconsin family courts take child support extremely seriously. If a parent is not paying the amount of support he or she has been ordered to pay or falls behind on payments, that parent faces severe consequences such as loss of driver’s license, liens on real property and personal property, and possible jail time.
Is Child Support Mandatory In Wisconsin?
Parents have a legal obligation to financially support their children. However, a formal child support order isn’t mandatory in divorce, custody or paternity proceedings. Parents are free to reach their own agreement about child support. If there is an existing child support order, the support recipient can decide not to enforce it.
Who Pays Child Support In Wisconsin?
- Their gross incomes
- The amount of time the children spend with each parent
- Whether the parent has other children to support
Under the guidelines, the parent with more custody time will generally be the recipient of child support, especially if their income is less than the other parent.
If you are facing sanctions for late or missed payments, talk with a lawyer at Benske Family Law. We can help you negotiate a repayment plan and address the charges against you.
What Is Child Support Used For?
- Educational expenses
- Extracurricular activities
- Medical bills
The recipient isn’t required to document their expenditures. Likewise, the paying parent can’t request an accounting of how the money was spent. The law assumes that the receiving parent will use the money to pay for household expenses relating to the children. If neglect becomes an issue, that should be addressed through a reconsideration of the child’s placement rather than through child support.