Child Support

Birmingham Child Support Lawyer

Serving Children & Parents in Oakland, Macomb, Wayne, Washtenaw, Livingston, Monroe, Genesee, Lapeer, & St. Clair Counties

As if divorce or separation was not hard enough on the children living through it, the issues and conflicts related to child support can add an extra layer of misery and suffering to the situation. Child support laws are different in each state, making these situations confusing, contentious, and complicated. Save yourself and your children more heartache by enlisting the help of our Birmingham, Michigan child support law firm to help you successfully navigate the process. Not only does the Law Firm of Victoria have a deep and thorough understanding of Michigan’s child support laws, but our lawyers have also traversed the process many times and will do the same with you, making the process as efficient and painless as possible. 

Give our lawyers a call today at (248) 780-1775 to set up an initial consultation and start finding the answers you seek.

What Is the Purpose of Child Support?

The goal of child support is to divide the costs incurred when raising a child or several children between the parents. In general, child support payments are usually paid in regular time intervals by one parent to the other. The main purpose of these payments is to support the child or children.

Habitually, these payments have been the responsibility of the non-custodial parent. This meant that the parent who does not have physical custody of the children is the one who usually had to pay. However, these days, this is not such a straightforward formula.

How is child support determined in Birmingham, Michigan?

Child support is determined by a complex formula that is based on the number of minor children, the number of overnights each party has with the child on a yearly basis, and the income of the parties. The Michigan Child Support Formula also takes into account child care expenses, health insurance premiums, and other factors.

The Birmingham court always maintains jurisdiction over child support and other child-related issues.

Whether you need help with child support issues during your divorce case or after, our Birmingham child support attorneys can help you. We also have experience handling child support cases with unmarried parents.

How are child support orders handled IN Michigan?

In Michigan, most orders for child support are paid through the friend of the court and provide for an immediate automatic withholding of child support payments from the payer’s income unless the court orders otherwise or approves an agreement of the parties.

Can child support orders be modified IN BIRMINGHAM, Michigan?

In Michigan, child support may be modified if there is a change of circumstances. Child support is usually ordered until the child reaches 18 years of age or graduates from high school, whichever occurs later (but not past the age of 19 ½). Non-payment of court-ordered support may lead to a contempt of court citation.

What about childcare expenses?

Child support may include a contribution to childcare expenses until August 31 following the child’s twelfth birthday.

Can the Court impute income to my spouse?

The court may impute income to a party that has an unexercised ability to earn income. The court may use relevant factors to determine whether a party has an actual ability to earn and a reasonable likelihood of earning the potential income. These factors include prior work history, health, education level, skills, capacity to work, available employment opportunities, and consistency or diligence of effort in seeking employment. The Birmingham court will determine whether imputing income is appropriate in a particular case.

What happens when the parent who is responsible for the payments is unable to make them?

Circumstances change through time, and even the best-laid plans face obstacles along the way. It may happen that the parent responsible for the payments loses their job. And, although they may be doing everything in their power to gain employment, they may not be immediately successful in this endeavor.

If the parent is now either receiving or looking to receive public assistance, it will impact the child support obligation. Also, if the child is receiving public assistance, this too will impact the child support obligation. Many factors affect the situation, such as the involvement of the county family law attorney on behalf of the state or the requirement of the court that the other parent obtains a job to help cover the costs associated with a child who is relying on public assistance. This is a very intricate and complex situation and the effects on child support can also be several. 

Understanding the Consequences of Not Paying Child Support

While parents may have valid reasons for being unable to make child support payments, failing to pay can have serious legal consequences. Some potential consequences of not paying child support include:

  • Wage garnishment
  • Loss of driver's license
  • Seizure of tax refunds
  • Liens on property
  • Revocation of professional licenses
  • Contempt of court charges

Not only can these consequences be financially devastating, but they can also damage relationships with children and lead to legal trouble. If you are struggling to make child support payments, it is important to speak with a Birmingham child support lawyer who can help you explore your options and avoid these potential consequences.

How Far Behind in Child Support Before Jail in Michigan?

In Michigan, you can be jailed for failing to pay child support if you are $5,000 or more in arrears. This is a felony offense, and you could face up to four years in prison or a fine of $2,000, or both. 

However, some factors can affect whether you are jailed for failing to pay child support. For example, if you have a good reason for being unable to pay, such as being unemployed or having a medical condition, you may not be jailed. Additionally, suppose you are making a reasonable effort to pay support. In that case, you may also be able to avoid jail time. 

Suppose you are facing the possibility of being jailed for failing to pay child support. In that case, speaking with our attorney in Birmingham is crucial. Our child support attorney can help you understand your legal rights and develop a plan to pay your child support.

If this is your case, a consultation with one of our child support attorneys in Birmingham Michigan can clarify it for you. Our child support lawyers will help you understand what can happen if your ex-spouse loses their job and is looking to rely on public assistance, and what options are available to you. We always have the welfare of your children top of mind.

What Is Child Support Designed to Cover?

First and foremost, it’s important to keep in mind that the welfare of the child is the main aim of child support. This means there are certain essential areas of a child’s life that need to be covered by these payments. Among them:

  • Shelter – This refers to the place where the child primarily lives. Child support may cover mortgage payments, rent, and utilities to ensure a safe environment for the child or children.
  • Food and clothing – These basic necessities of life must be covered by child support.
  • Education – Schooling and school supplies and other related costs.

Other items covered by child support may be decided in each individual case with the agreement of both parties, such as extra-curricular activities, trips, medical insurance, etc. Any leftover funds should be set aside for future expenses.

    "My biggest mistake was in not retaining you at the onset."

    - L.M.

    "You have been a great help for me and have opened my eyes to a lot of new information and I am very thankful for you and the Law Firm of Victoria."

    - A.L.

    "Thank you from the bottom of my heart! I appreciate your kindness, professionalism and patience. You are truly a blessing."

    - P.O.

Get In Touch
With Our Legal Team

Speak With Experienced & Compassionate Family Law Attorneys Call Us Today

A Commitment to Your Children’s Upbringing

Money matters are stressful under any circumstances, and when it is difficult for the parents to be on the same page because they are undergoing a divorce or legal separation, the issue becomes even more complicated and controversial. However, what should matter most to you is the well-being of your children. The courts will consider both parents’ income and the amount of time each one spends with the children with the purpose of having the children enjoy a quality of life as similar as possible as the one they enjoyed prior to the divorce or legal separation. Our child support lawyers in Birmingham, Michigan are your best allies in this quest for child support.

We know that you only want what is best for your child. Call our attorneys at (248) 780-1775 to speak to our team and find out where to begin. Consultations are available in-person and by phone for FREE.

Schedule A
Free Consultation

Fill Out OUr online Form Below
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.
  • By submitting, you agree to be contacted about your request & other information using automated technology. Message frequency varies. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to cancel. Acceptable Use Policy
  • Modifying Child Support Orders in Michigan: When and How
    • Child Support
    Read Blog
    Mom & Daughter
  • Avoiding Common Mistakes in Michigan Divorces Involving Child Support
    • Divorce
    Read Blog
  • The Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Law Matters
    Read Blog
    The Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Law Matters
  • Grandparents' Rights in Michigan: Understanding Legal Options & Visitation
    • Child Custody
    Read Blog
    Grandparents' Rights in Michigan
  • Responding to Divorce Papers in Michigan
    • Divorce
    Read Blog
    woman responding to divorce papers
  • How Long Does Divorce Take in Michigan?
    • Divorce
    Read Blog
    woman thinking of divorce