If you’ve realized that your marriage is coming to an end, and have started to think about the practicalities of divorce, one of your major concern is likely to be the child support payments you’ll either pay or receive, depending on whether your children will live with you or your soon-to-be ex-spouse. You may also be pondering the level of custody you plan to apply for, given the various types offered under Utah law. The four types of child custody you’ll need to compare are sole legal custody, sole physical custody, joint legal custody, and joint physical custody. As you may have guessed, the child custody agreement you make can affect the child support payments.
How Does Custody Affect Child Support Payments?
Sole custody will affect the amount of child support the non-custodial parent is expected to pay. When one parent has sole physical custody, the child is expected to live with them, meaning the non-custodial parent will need to pay child support to them to cover a share of the child’s living expenses.
Sole physical custody means that one parent caters to all of the child’s needs, including food, transport, and housing, so it’s only fair that the non-custodial parent should contribute financially. Generally, sole physical custody is awarded to allow a child to live in one home most of the time, and continue to attend their local school.
Where joint legal custody and sole physical custody exist together, the amount of child support due will not change. After all, although you may have joint legal custody, one parent will be incurring most of the expenses. However, joint legal custody means that the non-resident parent is legally entitled to a say in matters such as the child’s education, religion and medical treatment, amongst others.
Where joint physical custody has been agreed upon, the child will live in each parent’s home for equal periods of time. As the child’s living expenses will be more or less split 50/50, there may be no child support due to either parent.
Changing Custody or Child Support Arrangements
While you may agree to child custody or child support arrangements in good faith, fully intending to stick to the terms, sometimes life intervenes. If a change of employment status or other issue means you’d like to change the arrangements you have in place with your ex-spouse, you should consult an experienced Salt Lake City child support attorney as soon as possible.
We have plenty of experience in child custody, child support, divorce, and related family law cases, and will always do our utmost to secure the best possible outcome for you and your children.
Whether you’re in the early stages of planning a separation and divorce, are having problems with non-payment of child support, or need to change your child custody agreement, Salt Lake City child support attorney Emy Cordano has the legal expertise you need.
To arrange a case review and find out how I can help, call today on 801-804-5152.