In legal separation and dissolution proceedings, as well as in post-judgment matters, disputes often arise over the amount of child support payable by one parent to the other. Massachusetts has adopted guidelines for determining child support.
These guidelines, which are periodically amended, require consideration of factors including the incomes of both parents, the number of children for which support is required, the cost of health insurance paid by the parents, the cost of daycare paid by the parents and the amount of time the children spend with each parent.
A comprehensive understanding of these factors is necessary to ensure that the amount of child support proscribed by the guidelines accurately reflects the true income and expenses of the parents. At times, a deviation from the amount of child support under the guidelines is appropriate.
At Tracey & Associates, PC, we diligently work on behalf of our clients to obtain accurate information to substantiate income and expenses, including discovery of hidden or non-traditional sources of income, to ensure that the amount of child support is an accurate reflection of the incomes of the parties in an effort to protect the best interests of the children for whom the support is ordered. We will counsel you as to the factors that affect the amount of child support payable, and gather all the financial information necessary to ensure that a child support order is entered which properly applies the child support guidelines within the particular circumstances of your case. If the circumstances of your matter require, the court may order a portion of the marital assets to be segregated for your child’s support and education. This requires a finding that this sequestering of assets is necessary to ensure that child support will be received. Our firm provides guidance and litigation support when this issue arises.
A Massachusetts child support order is modifiable if there has been a “change in circumstances,” such as a significant increase or decrease in the income of either parent, a change in the amount of time the child spends with one parent, or the child having financial needs such as medical expenses that were not present when the initial support order was adopted by the court.
A child support order may also be modifiable if the application of the guidelines results in a different amount of support to be paid than that which was initially ordered.
At Tracey & Associates, PC, we offer experience and expertise in navigating these “changed circumstances,” both from the perspective of the paying parent and the parent to whom support is paid, to ensure that the entry of a new child support order continues to provide an adequate basis of child support.
To speak with a family law attorney about child support in Massachusetts, please call 617-236-1800 or contact us today.
Tracey & Associates, PC Family Law Practice 65 Walnut Street - Suite 302 Wellesley Hills, MA 02481