Thursday, January 16, 2014

Divorce and Child Support Issues in Idaho - Boise Divorce Lawyers - 208-472-2383

Child Support in Idaho

Child Support is a hot button topic in Idaho.  As a Boise Divorce Attorney I deal daily with child support; everything from calculating, offsetting, modifying to equalizing.  People are often confused about the function of child support.  I often hear from people that they are tired of paying the ex-spouse all their money or that they hardly have any time with their child so they don't think they need to pay so much support.  This is a misconception of the value and the function of child support.

Even worse than the above two examples is when someone tries to get more time with their child, not because they truly desire to maintain contact with them but so that they can equalize the support and perhaps not have to pay anything.

Child Support Pursuant to Divorce

Child Support is calculated during a divorce, often as a part of temporary orders, based upon the income of the respective parents.  If one or both parents is unemployed the court will not figure them at zero income. The court will impute an amount.  This is generally based upon one's historic income or, if there is no history of income, on minimum wage.

Child Support can be modified  if there is a substantial and material change of circumstance which would warrant a change.  Simply quitting your job or taking a lower paying job, however, will not qualify.

Modifying the Divorce Decree

I often get calls from people seeking to reduce their child support payments.  They often want to modify their divorce decree to give them more time with the child.  Their thinking is that the equalization of time would mean they won't have to pay anything.  The courts do not look kindly on this attitude.  The court can and will modify the original decree when it is shown that there is a warranted change in circumstances.  The court will even equalize or change child support but only for good reason.

Child Support is not a punishment.  It is meant to provide your share of support for your child.  The thing that people fail to understand is that usually the custodial parent spends much much more money on the child than what child support covers.  If you seek to equalize support by increasing your visitation, you will soon find out that you spend more on your child when the child is with you.  My best advice as an experienced divorce lawyer is spend your time and effort making the time you have with your child the best possible experience for them.  If you have a substantial change, go ahead and modify your divorce decree, but never seek the court's assistance out of spite or hard feelings toward your child's other parent.

If you are seeking a divorce or a child support modification and need to speak with a Boise Attorney, please give us a call, 208-472-2383, and see what we can do for you.