Suffolk Child Support Lawyer
Virginia Child Support Attorney Serving Clients Across Virginia Beach & Cape Charles
Every child has the right to receive financial support from each of his or her parents. During a divorce, it is crucial to make sure a child’s needs are met. Sometimes, parents have a difficult time receiving child support payments from their former spouse or, conversely, struggle to make those payments. Others experience a significant change in circumstances which demand a child support order to be reconfigured to meet the new conditions.
Whatever child support struggle you are facing, Bush & Taylor, P.C. can help. With over 30 years of combined experience, our Suffolk child support attorneys have the skills and resources to guide you through your family law matter. When you require professional legal services, let our responsive and caring legal team come to your aid.
To schedule your consultation with our child support lawyer serving Suffolk, NY, dial (757) 926-0078 today. No consultation fee!
Child Support in Virginia
Virginia law requires both parents, whether married or not, to provide financial support for their children. In the event of a divorce, only the custodial parent may request child support. The custodial parent is the one whom the child stays with the majority of the time. Although the non-custodial parent will be making the payments, the custodial parent is required to contribute a fair share.
In Virginia, child support is based on a variety of factors, including:
- The needs of the child
- The number of children
- The incomes of both parents
- The needs of the parents
A court or state agency will determine the exact amount of child support according to the guidelines outlined in the Code of Virginia. The way the child support is split between parents depends on the custody arrangement.
The various custody situations and their corresponding child support calculations include:
- Sole custody arrangement — when a child lives with one parent all the time, the child support is shared based on the proportion of what each parent contributes to the combined income.
- Split custody arrangement — when multiple children are divided between the parents, each parent’s proportionate share is factored, and the parent with the higher income pays the difference in the amounts.
- Shared custody arrangement — when a parent has custody or visitation of a child for more than 90 days of the year, the amount of support is based on the percentage of time the child spends with each parent.
How Child Support Is Calculated in Virginia?
In Virginia, child support is based on the reasonable needs of the child and the ability of the parent to pay. The most significant factors are the parents’ income, daycare expenses, the cost of medical insurance, any social security benefits the child may receive and the child’s living arrangements. A judge will then reevaluate the amount every three years.
The court determines the amount using a mathematical calculation created by the Virginia legislature. This calculation results from several inputs from which a child support award is tabulated. Based on those inputs, the guideline tables produce what is called the “presumptive child support award.”
The inputs for the court to consider are:
- the number of children for whom support is sought;
- the gross monthly income of each party;
- any work-related daycare expense incurred by the parties; and
- the health, vision, and dental insurance premium paid by one parent for the children.
Certain types of income such as public benefits, social security disability, child support received for another child, or overtime received if earned to pay a support arrearage, do not count as income on the child support guideline calculation. In addition to those listed above, there are countless other circumstances that can alter the child support calculation.
The court must also determine which child support guideline to use. Typically this done by determining if the child is with the non-custodial parent more than ninety days during the year. If so, the court may use a shared custody guideline which results in a lower child support figure. If not, then the court will use a primary custody guideline resulting typically in a higher child support award.
To learn more about calculating child support in Virginia, contact the Suffolk child support attorneys at Bush & Taylor, P.C.
How Much Back Child Support is a Felony in Virginia?
In Virginia, if a parent owes more than $5,000 in child support and is more than a year past due, they can be charged with a felony. If convicted, the parent could face up to two years in jail.
However, there are a few exceptions to this law. For example, if the parent can show that they could not pay the child support due to a good cause, such as unemployment or a medical emergency, they may not be charged with a felony.
If you are facing charges for failing to pay child support, speaking with an attorney to discuss your options is essential. An attorney can help you understand the charges against you and can represent you in court.
Let Our Child Support Lawyer in Suffolk Protect Your Legal Rights
At Bush & Taylor, P.C., our family lawyers in Suffolk provide exceptional representation for parents who are seeking or being required to pay child support in Virginia. We can be the voice you need in your fight for fair child support.