Child Support Lawyer
In Flagstaff

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At Antol & Sherman, PC, we pride ourselves on being a leading family law firm, providing clients with experienced legal representation in divorce and child support matters. Our attorneys have over 60 years of combined experience in the legal field. We are dedicated to protecting our client’s rights and interests, and offer personalized attention and respectful professionalism to each client, always understanding their unique situation.

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Flagstaff-Northern Arizona Family Law Attorneys That Know

Arizona Child Support Laws

Divorce proceedings can have a life-altering impact on the lives of spouses, and especially that of their children. The process can be draining both emotionally and financially, with many legal complexities to consider. Child Support is an essential part of navigating divorce or separation cases in Arizona, ensuring that the standard of living for all involved remains consistent.

To make sure the process is handled correctly and sensitively, it is important to seek the advice and assistance of qualified attorneys who specialize in family law cases. With over 60 years of experience, the professionals at Antol & Sherman are well-versed in the nuances of child support requirements and other key aspects of divorce proceedings. We understand that each case requires a tailored approach and strive to provide reliable advice every step of the way to help navigate complex legal matters.

Flagstaff Family Law Attorneys That Know

Arizona Child Support Laws

Divorce proceedings can have a life-altering impact on the lives of spouses, and especially that of their children. The process can be draining both emotionally and financially, with many legal complexities to consider. Child Support is an essential part of navigating divorce or separation cases in Arizona, ensuring that the standard of living for all involved remains consistent.

To make sure the process is handled correctly and sensitively, it is important to seek the advice and assistance of qualified attorneys who specialize in family law cases. With over 60 years of experience, the professionals at Antol & Sherman are well-versed in the nuances of child support requirements and other key aspects of divorce proceedings. We understand that each case requires a tailored approach and strive to provide reliable advice every step of the way to help navigate complex legal matters.

Child Support Guidelines

In Arizona, child support is determined by the Income Shares Model. This model was developed by the Child Support Guidelines Project of the National Center for State Courts. It takes into consideration each parent’s proportionate share of the total amount that would have been spent on their children if they had remained living together. The guidelines apply to all natural and adopted children, regardless of whether they were born in or out of wedlock.

The specific amount of child support is determined by the court using Arizona’s child support calculator. The calculator takes into account various factors, such as each parent’s gross income and certain expenses, in order to calculate a fair share for both parties. Alternatively, parents may agree upon their own child support amount with help from a mediator or attorney. For more information about Arizona child support guidelines check our blog.

Understand Key Child Support Factors

It is essential to have a comprehensive understanding of the seven assertions that predicate the use of guidelines in every child support case. The primary purpose of these assertions is to ensure that any given child support award is fair and equitable for all involved parties.

The Guidelines Apply To All Children

Child support guidelines apply to all children regardless of the marital status of their parents at the time of conception or birth. This includes offspring who are biologically related to both parties, as well as legally adopted children.

Child Support Is A Priority Financial Obligation

Child support is a priority financial obligation that must be paid first, even before other debts. It is not dischargeable in bankruptcy court, and the parent’s unrelated debts are not taken into consideration when calculating the amount of child support to be paid.

Child Support Is Separate From Spousal Maintenance

Child support and spousal maintenance are two separate forms of financial support for families going through a divorce.

Each Parent Has A Legal Duty To Support A Natural Or Adopted Child

Although it is a legal requirement for each parent to support natural and legally adopted children, it is voluntary to support any step-children.

Sometimes The Custodial Parent Pays Child Support

The custodial parent may be required to pay child support in some circumstances. There is no law explicitly requiring the noncustodial parent to solely pay monthly child support.

Child Support Is Calculated Monthly

Child support is calculated monthly to ensure a consistent and reliable form of financial assistance for the child. The amounts are periodically reviewed, typically on an annual basis, to reflect any changes in income or living situations. This monthly calculation ensures that the child has the same amount of money each month to cover expenses such as food, clothing, education, and other essentials without fear of inconsistent payment or lack of funds.

Child Support Is Not Unlimited

Child support is not limitless and is instead capped based on parents’ combined adjusted gross income. The Basic Child Support Obligation amount is the maximum amount that must be paid, and this amount is set at $20,000 per month for families with no more than six children. For those with more than six children, their Basic Child Support Obligation will be capped at the sixth child. Although parents are not obligated to pay any more than the BCSO, they may agree on a higher support amount if they wish.

How Is Child Support Calculated In Arizona?

In Arizona, the amount of child support is determined by the Arizona Child Support Guidelines. The first step in calculating child support is to determine each parent’s gross income. Gross income includes wages, salary, commissions, bonuses, and self-employment earnings of either parent. In addition, any investment income such as interest and dividends are considered part of this calculation. Once each parent’s gross income has been determined, the judge will use the guidelines to assess how much each parent must pay for support. Factors that are taken into consideration include the number of children in need of support, and any extraordinary expenses related to a particular child (e.g., chronic illnesses or special needs). Depending on these considerations, a greater portion or lesser portion may be allocated to one or both parents, as well as different percentages for each, depending on their respective incomes. In addition, children over 12 are deemed to have more expenses and, thus, require additional funds for their care if applicable.

Ultimately, once all factors and incomes have been taken into account and examined under the guidelines, the court will set an order for each parent’s contribution towards support for their children accordingly.

Duration Of Child Support

In Arizona, the duration of child support is determined by the court order that is issued. Generally, parents are expected to pay and/or receive child support until the child reaches their 18th birthday. However, if the child is still in high school when they turn 18, then a parent can expect to pay and/or receive support until their 19th birthday or until they graduate from high school, whichever comes first. For those in Arizona whose orders cover more than one child, the presumptive termination date of support would be tied to the youngest child’s 18th birthday. As older children age out of the order and reach their respective emancipation dates, parents should consider filing a modification with their local court to officially terminate the remaining support orders accordingly.

When it comes to ending an obligation to continue paying for a legal amount of support beyond an emancipation date, parents must file a petition with their local court in order to end any financial obligations between both parties concerning the said matter. Depending on each individual case, there may be other situations in which either parent may request an adjustment to their current order prior to reaching any sort of termination agreement.

Enforcing Child Support And Contempt Proceedings

If you are not receiving court-ordered child support in Arizona, there are options available to seek enforcement. The first step is to file an enforcement action with the appropriate court. This most commonly involves filing a Motion and Order to Show Cause or Petition for Contempt of Court. This document will outline the facts of your case, request that the non-paying parent appears in court, and explain why they have failed to pay child support. Once filed, the court can then issue a summons directing the non-paying parent to appear before the judge and respond to your request for enforcement.

If it is determined that the parent has willfully failed to pay child support, they may be subject to civil or criminal contempt proceedings which can include fines, garnishment of wages, or even jail time. Additionally, if you have an existing order in place but need an increase in child support payments due to a change in circumstances (for example if you now have custody of more children), you can also file a motion for modification of child support with the court.


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Free Initial Consultation

At Antol & Sherman, we understand that going through a divorce or needing assistance with child support can be a difficult and overwhelming time. That’s why our experienced team of attorneys are committed to providing the highest quality service and advice. We specialize in all aspects of family law, including divorce, custody disputes, and child support. Our goal is to ensure you receive the best outcome possible by making sure your rights are protected and that every court order is enforced. We offer free initial consultations so you can get an understanding of how we can help you and explore what your options are.

Experienced Trial Attorneys in

FLAGSTAFF

The law firm of Antol & Sherman, PC is located in Flagstaff, Arizona. Our lawyers represent people throughout Northern Arizona in a variety of legal matters including: 

•  Criminal Defense, including DUI, drug
charges, violent crimes & serious felonies

•  Family Law, including Child Custody,
Adoptions & Divorce

•  DUIs – All types from first offense to
aggravated & felony DUI

Experienced Trial Attorneys in
Flagstaff

The law firm of Antol & Sherman, PC is located in Flagstaff, Arizona. Our lawyers represent people throughout Northern Arizona in a variety of legal matters including: 

•  Criminal Defense, including DUI, drug charges, violent crimes
& serious felonies

•  Family Law, including Child Custody, Adoptions & Divorce

•  DUIs – All types from first offense to aggravated & felony DUI

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