Like child custody, child support can be a difficult legal issue. Both parents want to provide for their children but may be concerned about being able to afford child support payments while maintaining separate households.
Whether your case involves setting up initial child support orders or requesting to modify an existing arrangement, it’s extremely helpful to have an experienced family lawyer on your side. After all, a skilled attorney can help you understand and navigate Kansas’s child support laws while ensuring that your legal rights are protected throughout the process.
Under Kansas law, both parents have a legal obligation to financially support their children. In cases where the parents are not living together due to a divorce or break up, child support may be ordered to ensure that the child is adequately supported. Typically, the parent who 1) has a higher income and 2) has less physical custody of the child will be required to pay child support to the other parent.
Kansas has adopted state-wide guidelines that look primarily at two key factors: 1) the gross monthly incomes of each parent and 2) the work-related daycare and health insurance costs for the children. Additionally, courts may consider other factors when making child support determinations, such as:
Looking at a wide variety of factors helps a court make the best possible decision for a child. If a child has significant special needs and requires ongoing medical care, for example, a child support order may be higher than it would be for a child without those needs. Child support is usually paid until the child is 18 and has graduated from high school. In some circumstances, such as when a child has special needs, child support obligations may extend past the age of 18.
In many situations, a family’s circumstances change over time. One parent may have a significant increase or decrease in income, or a child’s needs may be greater due to an accident, injury or health issue. If there is a “material change in circumstances,” a child support order may be modified. A material change may include:
Importantly, child support modification orders only apply to future payments. If you believe that you have a material change in circumstances affecting your support obligation, it is critical to file a request for modification as soon as possible. An experienced family law attorney can advise you on whether your situation qualifies as a material change in circumstances.
When a court makes a decision on child support, that order is legally binding. Child support is typically paid through the Kansas Payment Center in Topeka through an income withholding order. This means that if you are ordered to pay child support, the amount will be withheld from your paycheck each month and then provided to your former partner.
If you have further questions about setting up, modifying, paying or disputing child support orders in the Overland Park area, Jeffers Law Office would be more than happy to meet with you. During our free initial consultation, you can get the answers you seek and begin to determine the best way to proceed with your unique case.
Mark Jeffers understands the difficulty that comes with situations like this. If you need to establish or modify a child support order, having a skilled family law attorney can be extremely helpful in presenting your case to a judge. Jeffers Law Office has substantial experience in Kansas child support law and will explain the process and likely outcomes to you. If you need assistance with a child support or modification order, contact Mark Jeffers at 914-385-LAWS (5297) for a free initial consultation. We offer legal services to clients throughout the Kansas City area (Kansas only), including Johnson County, Leawood, Olathe, Lenexa, and Shawnee.