Child support is money that either or both parents are ordered to pay on a regular basis toward the costs of raising their child(ren). Child support may be ordered by the courts or by the Missouri Family Support Division – Child Support Enforcement. The order specifies how often and how much a parent is to pay for child support. When minor children are involved, a child support order is included in the dissolution of marriage (divorce) or paternity judgment.
The Supreme Court of Missouri establishes guidelines (also known as “Form 14”) to calculate child support. Form 14 takes into account several factors, including the gross income of each parent, alimony or maintenance being paid to one of the parents, the number of children, the cost of work-related child care, the cost of health insurance for the children, and the amount of time the children spend overnight with each parent during the year. The court will presume that the amount of child support calculated by Form 14 is correct. However, the facts and circumstances of each case are different and the evidence may cause the court to award a different amount.
Child support may be modified only upon a showing of a substantial and continuing change of circumstances which makes the terms of the original judgment unreasonable. Therefore, whether you are going to be paying or receiving child support, it is important that you get it right the first time because the court will not be inclined to modify its prior judgment simply because you have “buyer’s remorse.” McChesney & Ortwerth will protect your rights and achieve the result you deserve.
We are trusted St. Louis divorce and family lawyers who fight for our client’s rights. We work with you to get the results you want in your child support case. We work with both men and women in St. Louis, Missouri, and the surrounding areas, and focus on use our power in all of our child support cases.