Child and Spousal Support, Custody, and Parenting Time
The breakup of a marriage is a difficult experience and process. You will not be divorced overnight as the process takes time in the court system. This progression is never easy on children. At every step during your divorce, remind yourself that your children’s interests – not yours – are paramount, and act accordingly. Ultimately, the resulting Judgment of Divorce will deal with:
Children need emotional and financial support from both parents. Even when a child’s parents do not live together, it is important they work together to support and be a part of their child’s life. Child support is determined by state formula based on the income of the parents and other factors. Parties cannot bargain away or set limits on a child’s right to receive support.
Regular payment of child and medical support provides:
- Decreased conflict between parents
- Increased involvement of the non-custodial parents
- Increased chance of children reaching their full potential
Spousal support, previously called alimony, is money paid to one’s former spouse for his or her support. The court considers these factors, and more, in awarding spousal support:
- The past relations and conduct of the parties
- The length of the marriage
- The ability of the parties to work and their respective income
Child Custody and Parenting Time
Child custody and parenting time are the most emotional and difficult issues in divorce cases. Custody may take many forms, including:
- sole custody
- joint custody
- shared custody
- primary custody
Custody has two prongs, physical and legal. As a general rule, legal custody is awarded jointly to both parents. The basis for determining custody is “the best interest of the child.” Best interest standards are gender neutral and contain no preferences for either parent.
Divorce settlements and judgments determine financial obligations and custody rights for both spouses. Protecting our client’s interests is vital to our family law practice. In doing so, we also work to safeguard the well-being and support for everyone involved.