People choose to divorce for a variety of different reasons. Although the decision may be a difficult one initially, most people can ultimately agree that they have made the best decision for themselves individually as well as their families. However, couples in Mississippi who have children together face an entirely different, complex set of issues. These couples will always have some degree of relationship through their children. Having knowledge of state child support guidelines can help avoid surprises down the road.
Of central importance is the knowledge that the state views the support of a child by his or her parent as a serious responsibility. Failure to do so can result in serious consequences, including wage garnishment or even imprisonment in some cases. As the percentage of parents failing to make child support payments across the country is very high, many states are working hard to enforce such orders.
A child support order can be modified under certain circumstances. For example, if the paying parent's income is lowered or raised, either party can request a modification. However, the person who makes payments has a responsibility with respect to the child, not the custodial parent. As a result, child support requirements do not change if the custodial parent remarries or if additional children are born.
Perhaps most importantly to know, only a court can approve a child support modification. Even if two parents agree on making a change, it must be approved by the court. The Mississippi Bar offers some additional information on state child support guidelines. While it is important to be aware of these guidelines, help from an attorney with experience regarding state laws can help ease you through a child support case and ensure that you are treated fairly throughout the process.
Source: The Mississippi Bar, "Child Support: What Every Mother and Father Should Know", , Oct. 12, 2014