According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 50 percent of Americans who divorce will remarry within five years. However, while this may sound as if child support obligations are automatically terminated when this happens, that is not necessarily the case. Whether it is the custodial or non-custodial parent who remarries, there are many legalities associated with how child support payments are handled under These conditions. Thus, whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, consult a child support attorney to make sure you have an understanding of your legal rights.
Parent Paying Child Support
If a parent paying child support remarries, they are usually still obligated to continue paying their current amount of child support to the custodial parent. In the view of most courts, the spouse paying child support is under a long-term obligation to ensure their child is properly cared for while still a minor. Also, most courts do not include the income of the new spouse when calculating child support, since the new spouse is viewed as having no legal obligation to supporting the children in these situations. However, if a non-custodial parent remarries or has new children with a new spouse, courts do sometimes take this into consideration and modify child support payments.
Parent Receiving Child Support
Since most states will not factor into consideration the income of the custodial parent’s new spouse when calculating child support payments, non-custodial parents may have few options in these cases. Even though it is likely more income will be available to help pay for the children’s expenses as the result of the new spouse’s income, courts often choose to keep child support payment arrangements as they are in these circumstances. Often this is due to the court wanting to make sure the children will still have the income necessary to maintain their usual standard of living, in the event the new marriage does not last.
While it is often difficult to have child support payments modified or terminated when a remarriage occurs, it is not impossible. However, to do so it often takes the skills of an experienced and knowledgeable child support attorney. Whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, if you feel as if your current child support arrangement needs to be modified, contact a child support attorney as soon as possible. By doing so, you will not only protect your legal rights, but also your children’s well-being.