Child Support in Georgia
The process of establishing child support payments often causes anxiety for parents going through the divorce process or paternity suits. Most parents want to pay reasonable child support if they do not have primary custody of their children, but often worry about the impact of excessive and financially crippling payments. Matthew Midgett has helped numerous clients navigate child support guidelines throughout the Savannah area as well as throughout Chatham, Bryan and Effingham counties.
Georgia Child Support Guidelines
Savannah parents should know that the state of Georgia requires both parents to support their children until a child reaches the age of 18, dies, graduates from high school, marries, emancipates, or joins the military. However, support can extend past the age of 18, such as in the case of a child still in high school.
Because of the intricacies of a negotiations, it is best handled by a legal professional who specializes in this type of family law. Contact our firm today for an initial consultation.
What am I required to pay?
The law requires noncustodial parents to pay a reasonable amount of child support to the custodial parent toward the child’s living expenses. Child support, in addition to a monthly or weekly sum, may also include such items as health insurance and payment of medical and dental expenses.
In 2007, the state of Georgia made some sweeping changes to child support laws and adopted a more rigid structure for determining what needs to be paid. The most important changes to the law included the following:
- The law now takes into account the combined income of both parents, along with the number of children to be supported, in determining the child support obligation.
- If currently paying or receiving child support, you may be entitled to a modification of your support order based on a financial change in circumstances. In other words, you might pay a substantially different amount based on the 2007 changes to the law.
- The court cannot order parents to pay for college. However, parents may agree to pay child support beyond the age of 18 or to pay for college expenses.
- A child support obligation ‘table” is now used to determine how much child support will be paid or received. With a more rigid structure, it is very important that courts have accurate information regarding each spouses income and earning potential when calculating that spouses ability to pay child support payments.