What You Need to Know About Child Support

There are many common misconceptions about child support and divorce. These fallacies can cause unneeded stress on the already stressful situation of figuring out who takes custody of your children and how much the other spouse should pay to help.

Here are some of the myths about child support and divorce so that you can move forward with accurate information:

A Parent Can Deny Visitation

Many mothers think it’s okay and legal to deny visitation if the father doesn’t pay child support. She arbitrarily decides that this delinquency allows her to shut the father out of contact with his child. To a judge, child support and child visitation are two separate issues. Child support does not pay for visits and a parent should not hold the threat of taking these visits away over the other parent’s head. A mother who doesn’t receive child support must go to court rather than taking matters in her own hands by keeping her ex-husband away. Ironically, denying visitation because of no child support may make the noncustodial parent feel justified for not paying it.

Father Pays Child Support

The mother doesn’t automatically get custody of the kids during a divorce nor does the husband automatically have to pay for child support. However, according to, in 80 percent of divorces, the mother becomes the custodial parent and the father pays child support. In most of these cases, all parties agree that the mother should have primary responsibility for the day-to-day care of the children. In contested cases, where both the father and mother want custody, the court decides based on the best interest for the child. In most cases, for the father to get custody, he must prove that the mother is unfit to parent.

Smaller Property Settlements Will Help You Avoid Child Support

Property settlements and child support are different matters and cannot be used to leverage each other. Jurisdictions calculate child support based on percentage of income. Child support is the duty of the noncustodial parent and this parent cannot escape the responsibility by taking a smaller part of the marital property.

Even with these misconceptions clarified, child support and its calculations can still be confusing in the midst of a divorce. At Nelson, Taylor & Associates, we are committed to helping you and your family receive the best legal advice possible in order to decide on a child support system that is comfortable for everyone.