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Child Support Payments

Child support is defined as a payment made from one parent to the other for support of their children after a divorce or separation. Child support payments are usually made from the parent who does not have custody of the children to the parent who does. When a married couple has children, the husband is automatically deemed the father and may be required to pay child support after divorce. In cases involving children out of wedlock, paternity must be established before child support can be imposed.

Who pays child support?

In cases where one parent is awarded sole custody of the children, the other parent is required to pay child support. In cases of joint custody, one of the parents may be required to pay child support to the other, depending on their relative incomes and expenses and how much time the children spend with each parent.
Not all cases of child support are clear-cut, however. Paternity issues often arise in child support cases. The following provides an overview of who must pay child support:

  • The biological father of a child born out of wedlock
  • A man married to the mother when the child is conceived
  • A man who marries the mother after the child’s birth and agrees to support the child
  • A man who takes in a child, which he rears as his son or daughter

Fathers with custody have a right to be paid child support by the mother as well. Stepparents are not required to pay child support.

If you have questions regarding divorce, child custody, visitation, or child support, you may want to consider contacting a family attorney.

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