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child support Archives

The process of filing for child support and having it enforced

When the process of divorce is still relatively new for couples in Montana, one of the concerns that may cross their mind is how they will continue to support the needs and comforts of their children without the support of a spouse. This change in the dynamic of their family will undoubtedly have an impact on parenting and raising their children, but resources like child support have been created to hopefully provide at least a little relief. 

Child support tips for dads

Montana divorce rates have dropped, and more dads want ongoing relationships with their children. However, despite these numbers, there is still a large group of single fathers who need information about child support, how the system works and what they should consider when setting up a plan. At the Cunningham Law Office, we can help you work out a plan with your ex that makes financial sense for you and your kids.

Can your child support obligation be modified?

When you and your spouse choose to get a divorce in Missoula, you may naturally expect to have to pay child support. Like most parents, you probably have no issue with supporting your children financially, yet at the same time, you do not want your child support obligation to become a prohibitive expense. That might happen if your financial circumstances take a turn for the worse after your children support agreement has gone into effect. What should you do, then, if this happens? 

How can I file a complaint about the handling of my case?

Dealing with child support issues in Montana usually means trying to get support set up and ensuring you receive or pay the right amount. However, problems may also arise with the child support office. Perhaps they have mischarged you or withheld money. They may have made a decision you do not like or mishandled your case, which led to problems for you. Whatever the case, The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services explains you have the right to file a complaint if you feel wronged.

How can you effectively plan for and use child support payments?

You know that as your divorce gets closer to finalizing in Montana, you and your ex will need to negotiate the custody and care of your children. This process is critical to creating an arrangement that benefits your children and allows them to continue a relationship with both of their parents. It also allows you to have adequate financial means to provide for the necessities of your children.

Back child support and tax refunds

If you are like some parents, you look forward to receiving a tax refund from the IRS. Whether you regularly use your tax refunds to get caught up on bills, clear debt or purchase things that you have had your eyes on for a long time, there are many reasons why people count on their tax refunds. Unfortunately, some parents have had their tax refunds intercepted because they fell behind on child support due to losing their job or going through financial hardships for some other reason. If this is something you are currently struggling with, you should be aware of the potential repercussions that may lie ahead.

How child support is determined and what it covers

The purpose of child support is to ensure that the child of divorcing parents maintains the same standard of living after the divorce that he or she enjoyed prior to it. Therefore, Montana courts take a number of factors into consideration when determining the amount of child support owed, including the child's age, educational and medical needs, physical/emotional condition and the financial resources of each parent, as well as those of the child. If the child requires day care, the court will also consider that cost, and if either parent is legally obligated to support any person other than the child, the court will take into account that person's needs as well.

Determining which parent pays child support

The court system in Montana has significant latitude in establishing child support orders. State guidelines use a consistent standard throughout the various departments and related agencies. According to Montana Child Support Guidelines, each case is determined based on the circumstances and individual needs of the child. The goal is to ensure the marriage dissolution does not adversely affect the child’s standard of living.

Does my ex have any say in how I spend child support?

During your divorce, you and your ex followed Montana's guidelines for determining child support, and the judge's ruling set it in stone. Your child's other parent has no quarrel with the amount, but does want to know exactly how you're spending that money. Do you have to provide a breakdown?

Cunningham Law Office is a family law-focused firm in Missoula, Montana. We serve Missoula, Ravalli County, and the surrounding area.