If you do not receive enough child support, you may be able to request a court order to obtain an increase. There are several different scenarios where an attorney may be able to help you obtain more child support by filing a petition in court, including the following:
If child support has not been previously ordered and you were not married to the non-custodial parent, you may need to file a petition to establish paternity. A paternity case may be filed by either biological parent. Even if a father’s name is on the birth certificate, there is no way to enforce his obligation to pay child support without a court order.
The fastest way to obtain a court order establishing paternity is for both parties to sign an acknowledgement of paternity. Either parent can request a DNA test if there is any dispute that the putative father is the biological father of the child.
If an order has already been granted ordering the other parent of your child to pay child support and they are refusing to comply with the order, you can take them to court to enforce the order by filing a petition for contempt. A petition for contempt must be served on the other side, and the court may set a hearing. The non-custodial parent will be given a chance to explain why they have not been paying child support. If the court finds that they have willfully failed to pay support, a judge may order that they be jailed and pay for your attorney’s fees.
You can also file a petition for modification of a previous order if you are not receiving enough child support and the non-custodial parent is receiving more income than they were when the prior order was entered by the court. You will need to request proof of the non-custodial parent’s change in income. If you believe that the parent is hiding income, you may need to request that they be ordered to disclose bank account information and other documents relevant to their finances.
It is important to hire an experienced lawyer to help with your child support case. An attorney can ensure that all the proper procedures are followed and present arguments to support your side of the case. In most cases, child support is ordered according to calculations based on income. If your situation involves a child with special needs or there is another reason the judge should deviate from standard child support calculations, an attorney may be able to request that you be ordered more child support than the standard amount.
If you have questions about requesting or modifying a child support order, contact Justin M. Jackson at the Jackson Law Firm. Justin M. Jackson is an experienced family law attorney in Cedar Park who can help you obtain a favorable result in your child support case.