CHILD MAINTENANCE LAWYER
When a couple with children separates or divorces and one of the spouses gets custody, the other one is obligated to pay a sum of money every month to help pay for any expenses related to child care, such as food, education, health, etc. This is known as child maintenance.
Where parents have shared custody no child maintenance must be paid, and each parent is responsible for the expenses of the children whenever they are with them. However, if there is a great gap between the financial means of the parents, it may be decided that one of them pay a bigger percentage of the minors’ fixed costs.
Child maintenance can be reduced or eliminated following a modification of the arrangement as long as the circumstances in which the arrangement was ordered have changed.
WHAT TO DO IF…
When parents do not have shared custody, it can be a little difficult knowing how much should be paid every month. To make the task easier and have a broad idea of where to start, there are reference tables that help calculate child maintenance and therefore come up with a number.
Regardless, the personal circumstances of the children and the parents can mean that the numbers dictated on the table increase or decrease. For example, it can vary significantly depending on whether children are sent to a public or private school, if they go to after-school activities and what the associated expenses may be.
CHILD MAINTENANCE: EXAMPLES
My husband and I are getting a divorce, and even though I am aware that shared custody is the best option for our children, I think he should pay a larger percentage of child-related expenses since it’s always been our understanding when we were married and he makes almost twice what I make.
When we got divorced, I was at a job where I made a lot more money than I do now, so the child maintenance sum that I pay on a monthly basis is now too high and I can’t make the payments. I need to make changes to the child maintenance arrangement.
My wife has filed for divorce and she is asking for child maintenance payments which are so high they would literally bankrupt me.