What Questions Do They Ask at a Child Support Hearing?
Dec 30, 2020 12:05 PM EST
Sigmund Freud once said, "Children are completely egotistical; they feel their needs intensely and strive ruthlessly to satisfy them." Unfortunately, some parents are the same way. There are parents who will not pay their child support and others who may lie about paternity or try to get more money than the amount to which they are entitled.
A child support hearing will take place when the parent the child lives with (the custodial parent) attempts to get payments from the non-custodial parent for such things as food, shelter, medical care, and education. Although child support traditionally ends when the child turns 18, a parent may be responsible for support until the child graduates from high school.
In the state of Michigan, child support payments are decided by a judge. The amount is often determined by a Friend of the Court. A Friend of the Court will also be responsible for enforcing child support payments if they are missed or underpaid.
When you go to a child support hearing they will ask you a series of questions. It is helpful to know what to expect.
How much do you spend on food and clothing?
Obviously, children need food. However, the quality of food and clothing a person has is often dependent on the amount of money that they make. It is not enough to simply provide the child with nourishment and protection from the elements, they should be able to eat and dress according to the income of both of their parents.
How old is the child?
A child's needs change as they grow older. Younger children grow out of their clothes more quickly and they need daycare whenever a parent is not around. Older children may want to go to camp or need special supplies for school. The amount of child support may fluctuate based on the child's age.
Does the child have any special needs?
If your child has a learning disability or a physical disability, chances are they have extra expenses. You may have to pay for such services as tutoring or physical therapy.
What is your income?
Both parents in a child custody case will be asked about their weekly income and how much money they have in the bank. You will be expected to disclose information about 401ks and inheritance money as well. They will also ask you about any assets you own.
What kind of expenses do you have personally?
You will be asked about your living expenses and the kinds of bills that you have to pay. If one parent has a medical condition that takes up a lot of their income, they may not be asked to pay as much as they normally would.
Child support is critical to the health and well-being of your children and also to your personal wellness. If you are preparing for a child support hearing it is important to have a child support attorney to represent you. You should look for an attorney who is trained in family law. They should be well-versed in Michigan's court system and they should have an excellent reputation with the state bar.