Atlanta Child Support Lawyers
Experienced Child Support Attorneys in Atlanta GA
In Georgia, both parents are required to support their children until a child reaches the age of 18, graduates from high school, marries, dies, emancipates or joins the military. Additionally, support may be required past the age of 18 as well, such as in the case of a child who is still in high school. Child support is paid by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent for the child’s living expenses, health insurance, medical and dental expenses, and more.
Understanding Child Support in Georgia
The formula for determining appropriate child support in Georgia typically involves taking a detailed look at both spouse’s finances. Since 2007, Georgia child guidelines have focused on an “income shares” model. The courts look at both spouse’s salary, commissions, self-employment income, bonuses, overtime, severance pay, pension income (if it is recurring), interest income, dividend income, trust income, capital gains, gifts, prizes, lottery winnings, and income from a variety of other sources. That “combined adjusted income” amount is used to establish a “Georgia Child Support Obligation Table” which goes on to help determine a “Basic Child Support Obligation,” which is then applied to each parent’s proportionate share of the combined adjusted income. All told, the process for calculating child support involves about nine separate steps.
Confused? It’s easy to get lost in the complex rules and guidelines that go into determining how much child support you and your child are owed. The lawyers at Kitchens New Cleghorn will help you review you finances and answer any questions you have about how a child support determination will be reached. We will work hard to ensure that the court has the best information possible when making a decision about your case, and maintain our office in Atlanta.
Changes in Life Circumstances
Life circumstances don’t always stay the same and neither should your child support schedule. If you experience a change in income, your previous schedule may no longer be suitable for you or your children. Georgia law does allow for the modification of support schedules, and our Atlanta child support lawyers can petition the court to modify your schedule in a way that matches your life needs. If a major change means your old schedule is no longer a fit, give us a call right away.
Included among the factors which a Georgia court may consider in making a determination to adjust your child support guidelines are:
- Increased medical costs for the child
- Increased educational costs for the child
- One party’s other support obligations to another household
- Changed medical expenses of the parent
- In-kind contribution of either parent
- Extraordinary travel expenses to exercise visitation or shared physical custody