Free Child Support Lawyers In Houston
Parents still have the responsibility to care for their children even after a divorce. Parents have the duty to support the child, including providing the child with clothing, shelter, food, medical and dental care, and education. A divorce or separation does not take away the rights of the parent over their children. The non-custodial parent or the obligor pays child support based on their monthly earned income.
Other types of compensation that determine child support include income generated from assets such as property rentals, bonuses, commissions, and more. The obligor can seek modification of child support if their financial situation changes such as when they lose their jobs, or when their income reduces. A child support attorney can help you calculate the amount of money you may need to pay for child support if you are the non-custodial parent.
How To Calculate Child Support In Texas
The following are the general guidelines for calculating child support in Texas:
- 1 child20% of the non-custodial parent’s average monthly net resources
- 2 children 25% of the non-custodial parent’s average monthly net resources
- 3 children 30% of the non-custodial parent’s average monthly net resources
- 4 children 35% of the non-custodial parent’s average monthly net resources
- 5 or more children 40% of the non-custodial parent’s average monthly resources
The non-custodial parent can decide to pay more than the required guidelines but cannot pay less. In a collaborative divorce spouses can come up with creative and customized ways to ensure that the children are well taken care of.
Non-Custodial Parent Not Paying Child Support
You may have to go back to court to file an enforcement action if the noncustodial parent is not paying child support. The judge may either fine or jail the noncustodial parent for “contempt of court”. Contempt of court in this situation means not obeying a child support order issued by the court. The judge may make the noncustodial parent pay all the outstanding child support as condition of being released from jail. Non-custodial parents need to pay child support on time. If they cannot do this due to new circumstances, they can always seek for modification of the child support amount in court.
What If You Cannot Afford A Lawyer?
You need an experienced divorce lawyer to represent you when you file for a divorce. If you cannot afford one, you may benefit from the pro bono lawyers that are listed by the State Bar. However, only few lawyers provide pro bono legal services and there are many people seeking pro bono services. That means it is very likely that you will be turned away from pro bono programs in the state.
Fortunately, a collaborative divorce is less expensive compared to divorces cases that end up in court. A collaborative divorce involves the divorcing parties and their lawyers negotiate a divorce settlement agreement in a civil manner. Since there is no mud-slinging or fighting in a collaborative divorce, it may actually help the couple finalize their divorce sooner and cheaper than if they had gone to court.