This is one are in which the courts have little discretion. You either have to pay child support or receive it. The amount of child support is based on the income of both parents, the age of the children, the number of the children each parent has custody, and other costs paid to third parties; such as health insurance, daycare expenses, extracurricular activities, etc.
In Washington State child support amount is based on a complex formula taking into account the above mentioned factors. The formula produces what is called the Transfer Amount; which, in most cases, is the amount the non custodial parent pays to the custodial parent.
Courts do have discretion to deviate from the formula based transfer amount, and in some cases, where there is a valid reason, they will most likely order deviation.
Courts can also impute income to voluntarily underemployed or unemployed parent based on child support statutes in calculating child support.
Many parents assume they don’t have to pay child support because they don’t have a job or that they are willing to give up custody to the other parent so long as they don’t have to pay child support. This however is a false assumption. If you give up custody you have to pay child support, and if you are unemployed you still have to pay child support.
In Washington, child support continues until the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school, whichever is later. However, in some cases the non custodial parent will be required to pay post secondary child support if the child attends college. However, this requirement does not apply to all cases; there are exceptions. Your Celebi Law attorney will review your case to determine if the exceptions apply to your case.
It is highly recommended that parents, who are custodial parents or otherwise, consult with an attorney prior to taking on a child support case without representation of a counsel. It is best to hire an attorney to represent you in your child support case because once the child support is entered it is very difficult to modify it for two years. Overpayment of child support can become very expensive because of this two year rule.
It is also imperative a parent should not let his/her feelings get in the way when the child support is being litigated.
At Celebi Law Office we understand what a parent goes through in divorce and trying to protect his/her financial interests and the interests of his children. We are here to help you in this difficult process and protect your interests as well as the interests of your children.