One of the reasons many parents try to get a50/50 split into depositwith your co-parent, whether in a divorce or a custody case, it has to do with the idea that if you own your child as often as your co-parent, neither of you will have to pay child support. Equal time ownership shouldn't equal child support, right? While this makes sense on some levels, in today's blog post we have to address the question of whether this is correct.
Whether a 50/50 split in custody means no child support for both parents depends on many factors. Chief among these factors are your and your co-parent's income, how many children are being tried, which parent has the right to determine the children's primary residence, and the role you and your co-parent played in the events leading up to to your divorce incident. . Each of these factors and more will be considered by a family court judge if you and your co-parent are unable to resolve the child support issue.
I think one of the beliefs people have when going through a divorce is that 50/50 custody is supposed to be the perfect setup for families. Everyone will be happy if the kids see both parents for the same amount of time, right? While this may be true for many families, I got it wrong enough to bring it to your attention today. Even child custody departments are difficult to manage, difficult to maintain, and may not even be a good fit for your children. Just because someone has benefited from a 50/50 split of custody doesn't mean their child will.
The issue of child support in Texas is inseparable from child custody. Most importantly, child support is closely related to which parent has the right to determine their child's primary residence. All other rights, obligations and scheduled periods of ownership derive from this right. Here are some of the basics about ownership and custody that I think you need to understand before we start talking about child support.
Custody and child support: what is the relationship between the two?
When it comes to child custody, the most important fact I can share with you is that there is no custody in the Texas Family Code. What most people call custody is known in the codebook as guardianship. Custody is such a familiar word that judges and lawyers use it almost as a generic term. Custody is intended to summarize in one word issues related to ownership, access, visitation, alimony, and guardianship rights and responsibilities. That's a lot of responsibility for a seven-letter word.
You should expect to be named joint guardian of your children along with your spouse or co-parent. This is the most common appointment of parents in a family law proceeding. Conservatives in joint administration are equal to joint custody. Co-managing restorers have similar rights and obligations to each other. Perhaps the most significant difference between parents who would have joint custody type rights and responsibilities is that one parent has the right to determine the primary residence of the children. The parent entitled to determine the child's primary place of residence can not only choose the place of residence, but also enroll the child in school. This is the crown jewel of rights when it comes to a child custody case.
What is the relationship between child support and custody and visitation?
Let's take a closer look at the relationship between child custody and child support. We can begin our examination by looking at the Texas Family Code. Section 153.138 of the Family Code provides that the appointment of jointly controlled guardians shall not affect or limit the court's authority to order a jointly controlled guardian to pay maintenance to another jointly controlled guardian. This language is a little strange, but it's still important. Let's break it down into an English-like language.
All that language means is that Texas law treats child support payments as a separate matter of guardianship. While these themes are related to each other when it comes to participating in a custody case, this does not mean that each theme is connected in any particular way. Your divorce case may have different outcomes than your friend's on these issues because your circumstances are different. If your case has gone to court, chances are a judge has given surprising orders on the matter. Family law cases are incredibly specific facts. You cannot assume that what happened in another case will also happen in your case.
If there is a standard term or even an extended standard term, you or your spouse who is not the primary guardian are responsible for paying child support. Child support is calculated for most people based on guidelines set forth in the Texas Family Code. Your net monthly income is the first part of this equation. Your gross income (income from all sources) is calculated and, from this amount, some items are deducted, such as: B. Income tax. The resulting number is used to determine child support.
In the next part, the specific circumstances of your case come into play, specifically the number of children you have in court. For a child in court, 20% of your net monthly income is paid monthly as child support. If there are two children, 25% of the net monthly income is paid. And so on, until you reach a threshold of 50% of your mandatory net monthly income for child support. A court will hesitate to ask you to pay a higher fee. The Texas Family Code states that for six or more children in court, no less than 40% will be paid.
What about 50/50 custody? Where does this come into play?
As I mentioned at the beginning of today's blog post, 50/50 custody is considered the holy grail of child custody arrangements. I regularly hear from parents that their main goal for the custody component of the case is a 50/50 split, which seems fair in many ways and allows both parents plenty of time with their children. However, there are a few things to consider before deciding ahead of time that custody of your children needs to be split 50/50.
First, even if you try to split the week exactly in half, it's almost impossible for you and your co-parent to split custody of your kids exactly 50/50. The reality is that children get sick. adults get sick. Children have activities that are easier for one parent than the other. The kids are tired of constantly traveling from house to house and you may want to take your kids with you for a few more days this week while your co-parent stays with the kids longer than stated in your divorce decree next week . .
My point is that you and your co-parent will work together and adjust custody arrangements as you see fit based on the changing circumstances you will face throughout the year. This is nothing bad or something unexpected. This means that anyone can create the most complicated escrow arrangements and estate plans ever devised, and circumstances require everyone to customize those plans. The more complex your parenting plan, the more likely everyone will have to adjust it.
In my experience, what is best for escrow plans is a clear, easy-to-understand arrangement. Whatever your custody agreement is, it doesn't seem to matter much if you and your co-parent can't understand what the agreements require of you. Instead, you want clear instructions where you and your co-parent understand what your schedule is and what is required of you. Once you get into the swing of creating the estate plan, you and your co-parent will have an easier time adjusting when necessary.
When it comes to child support and 50/50 division of property, it is not uncommon for the highest earning parent to be ordered to pay child support. Imagine a hypothetical situation where you earn $5,000 a month and your co-parent earns $4,000 a month. In this scenario, even if everyone had split custody 50/50, they could still be asked to pay co-parent child support. If you have two children in court, you may be asked to pay your co-parent $250. I arrived at this number by multiplying 0.25 (25%) by the $1,000 difference in your net monthly income.
A family court judge may try to reconcile your child's living environment in your home and that of your co-parent. The easiest way to do this would be to check the child support payments you make to your co-parent. However, many circumstances can come into play here and can make a difference in this determination. Starting with the fact that you and your co-parent can easily agree that you don't have to pay child support if your income is similar. A fair division of time between you and your co-parent places a significant financial burden on both of you in raising your children.
Ultimately, the most important factor in this discussion may be whether you and your co-parent can settle your case out of court or are forced to appear before a judge. If you and your co-parent can successfully resolve your case, you can each write any child support application you want. If your decision doesn't violate Texas public policy (meaning the settlement is unscrupulous), anyone can start their child support journey. However, if you are going before a judge to have him or her decide, then all bets are off when it comes to child support or other issues related to your case.
Where is child support paid in Texas?
Now that we've established what child support benchmarks are, the next logical question to answer is where the payments are being made. Alimony payments are largely made through the Public Prosecutor's Office. OAG keeps track of all payments made and whether you are up to date with your child support payments.
If, after your divorce or custody proceedings, you are the parent ordered to pay child support, you will receive a withholding order, which accompanies the other documents, and requires your employer to withhold a certain percentage of your payment. This money is automatically transferred to the OAG to fulfill your child support obligations.
This might sound intrusive to some people, myself included. It's weird that the government is messing with their income (more than them, anyway). However, there are advantages to paying child support this way. First, you don't have to worry too much about errors in the amounts or frequency of payments. Think of it as an automatic deposit into a retirement account. If you had to make these deposits manually, you are more likely to forget or make a mistake when making your deposit. The automatic payment of child support by the Federal Public Ministry makes life easier.
Then there will be no question about the amount of child support you owe each month. I don't know your specific circumstances, but I've worked with many parents who have gone through a situation where their co-parent asked for $1,000 in child support for one month and it increased to $1,500 the following month. This increase could have been justified: it could be a medical bill that needs to be paid or something. However, it is very difficult to budget for such a large item when it changes significantly from week to week.
There is no doubt how much child support you will have to pay if withholding is found. It's out of sight and out of mind. That way, you and your co-parent can have meaningful conversations as you discuss other issues that are more pressing and important than child support. Don't underestimate the peace of mind it can bring when you don't have to talk about money with your parent at every opportunity.
It is your responsibility to ensure that the hold order is in place if you are a family member. With so many people changing jobs these days, the employer listed on last year's payroll deduction notice may not apply. Because of this, you must contact the Attorney General's office and your co-parent to alert them of the change in employment status. The Attorney General's Office can help you draft a new wage deduction notice and present it to your new employer so you don't miss out on child benefit payments.
Remember that just because you have a current salary deduction doesn't make you any less responsible for maintaining child support payments. You will need to create an account for yourself on the Attorney General's website to keep track of your payments and ensure you are up to date. It's not an excuse to say that you assume everything was done for you because there was salary withholding. Instead, take responsibility for your circumstances by keeping track of everything.
Finally, remember that child support is intended to benefit your children. Even if payments are made to one of the parents, you should always keep in mind that these payments are particularly important for your child's well-being. It can sometimes be frustrating when a portion of your salary goes to your co-parent. However, your children benefit from this amount, which should make those payments a little more tolerable.
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