Do you need support for a child? Are you defending against an enforcement action? The Texas Family Code lays out the formula for how much child support should be paid each month. Factors to consider include how many children are in the family, children from other relationships, disabilities, and the cost of health insurance. Once a court orders support payments to be made, failure to make those payments can subject that person to jail time and, in some cases, revocation of their driver’s license.
How can child support be modified?
Child support orders can be modified through a court hearing or the through the CSRP or Child Support Review Process. The CSRP is typically faster than scheduling a court hearing. It works best when both parents can agree on the order.
Your child support order may be modified if
It has been three or more years since the order was established or the last modified monthly amount of the child support ordered differs by either 20 percent or $100 from the amount that would be awarded according to child support guidelines or a material and substantial change in circumstances has occurred since the child support order was last set.
Important: The amount of child support you are ordered to pay can only be changed by obtaining a new court order. Informal agreements between custodial and noncustodial parents do not change the child support court ordered amount. You must go through the courts.
Have you given or received notice of a Temporary Orders hearing? You’re probably wondering what comes next in the process. Strategy in these cases can be extremely complicated and might require case evaluation. Call John Choate Law and ask the attorneys to guide you through this.
“I live in Texas, and the custodial parent lives in another state (where child support was ordered). How do I file for a modification?”
This is called an interstate case. These cases can be complicated. It’s best to contact your local child support office for assistance. Generally, if the custodial parent lives in the state where the child support order was established, the modification request will have to be made through that state.
Frivolous Filing Modification
Sec.156.005. FRIVOLOUS FILING OF SUIT FOR MODIFICATION: If the court finds that a suit for modification is filed frivolously or is designed to harass a party, the court shall tax attorney’s fees as costs against the offending party.
In short, if you are interested in filing for child support modification as a means to express upset with the other parent, you may end up paying their attorney’s fees. If you believe this is being done against you, please contact us.
Child Support Calculation
Child support is based on gross income from all sources. Once you have calculated your gross income, you can deduct only three things: Social Security, withholding of your federal income tax, and withholding as if you were a single person claiming one exemption and the standard deduction. (The medical insurance premium counts for your child or children only, not your spouse or yourself.)
Once you do those subtractions from gross income from all sources, you are left with a dollar amount that is known as your net resource. You then multiply the net resource by a percent based on the number of children you have:
- One child – 20%
- Two children – 25%
- Three children – 30%
- Four children or more – 35%
Under Texas law, the monthly child support net resource figure used to determine child support is capped. The net resource cap is $7500 a month, which means that the maximum child support for two children is $1875 per month (25% of $7500). The payer of child support is also required to pay for the child’s health insurance premium because the payer is allowed to deduct that cost from gross income from all sources in determining net resource.