Navigating the tricky waters of a child support case can surely feel turbulent at times, especially if the parents are at-odds against each other. It is often the custodial parent who seeks support from the noncustodial parent, however, the court will conclusively determine the terms of child support if granted. A parent may have to attend court to establish, modify, or enforce a child support order. As a child support lawyer parents trust from the Law Office of Daniel E. Stuart, P.A. would agree with, preparing ahead of time can make the difference in the outcome of your child support case. To get ready for your child support hearing, there is some insight you should be privy to before entering the courtroom.
Calculate a Realistic Request
The best approach for preparing for a child support hearing is to calculate a realistic request for payments. Know ahead of time how much in child support would be helpful for your child. If the judge sees you have done your research and are not seeking child support as means to take revenge on the other parent, then it is more likely to be granted. Consider meeting with your legal team, similar to lawyers from the Law Office of Daniel E. Stuart, P.A., so that they can determine how much in child support is fair based on your circumstances.
Have Evidence Ready
The primary focus for the court in a child support case is what will provide the child with the care they need to be happy and healthy. When establishing child support, the court will assess each parent’s income and current or sought after custody rights. It is imperative to the outcome of the case to have evidence ready for the judge to review. The more proof you have that backs up your request, the more likely the court is to decree a child support order. Examples of evidence to bring to your hearing are listed as follows:
- Recent pay stubs
- Tax returns from last couple years
- W-2 forms
- Custody and visitation schedule
- Child custody orders
- Other financial documents related to earnings and expenses
- List of child’s needs and associated costs
Prepare with Your Lawyer
Your legal team is going to be your best advocate in getting you ready for your child support hearing. They can answer questions and offer insight that applies to your unique situation. Friends and family may give you advice that is well-intentioned, but it just may not be correct based on your circumstances. Parents who need help with a child support hearing must get assistance from a legal professional who is accustomed to handling family law related cases.
Ultimately, the court will grant child support requests if it reflects the best interest of the child and is a realistic amount for the paying spouse to fulfill. Parents who think they can benefit from child support payments must file promptly, as retroactive payments may or may not be honored. Getting ready for a hearing with help from a legal team is an ideal way to yield the child support verdict into yours, and essentially your child’s, favor.