Non-custodial fathers: know the factors that affect child support

Child support laws have been changing and reforming over recent years to look more and more at the rights of the non-custodial parent, which is often the father. In the past, fathers were assumed to make more money and thus be the ones to pay more child support to the mother. Now, these laws often look at the income of both parents and many other aspects of the non-custodial parent involved.

If you are the non-custodial parent, or not the parent with court ordered physical or legal custody of his/her child, the guidelines for Texas direct courts to take into account the amount of time spent with your child or children and other relevant factors when it comes to determining child support amounts.

Custody arrangements

Certain custody arrangements give both parents visitation schedules that are close to equal, or that cost a similar amount during their duration. Factors like school days or extracurricular activities can change the expected expenses for each parent’s visitation schedule. Equal amounts of time spent together and money spent may reduce the child support paid by the non-custodial parent.

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Courts will consider specific needs and obligations for the child that may not be in the “usual” circumstances for raising a child. They will also look at other income in the household, possibly from a remarriage, side business or assets—which could drastically change the amount one parent owes.

Standard of living

Depending on the house, individual assets, activities, health insurance, medical expenses, and best interests of the child involved, the courts can determine a “standard of living” for each parent’s household and make child support decisions based off of it.

Consider all your child support options with an attorney experienced in fathers’ rights and child support to make sure the money you pay is fair for your unique situation. Don’t let your rights to reasonable child support be affected only by your status as the father or non-custodial parent.

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