Child support is an important family law topic that is relevant to Michigan parents who have minor children and who go through divorces or separations. When two parents end their relationship, they must find ways to provide their children with love, support, and financial assistance to ensure that their needs are met. Child support is the obligation that parents assume when they must provide for their kids after the ends of their relationships.
Like other states, Michigan recognizes specific factors that influence whether child support will be required and if it is, how much must be paid. This informational post does not provide legal advice to its readers, and if readers have questions about their own child support orders or agreements, they are encouraged to direct their inquiries to trusted family law attorneys in their communities.
Fact #1: Child support does not always end when a child becomes an adult
The age of majority is 18 years old, and many readers may assume that all child support orders end when children reach this age. However, child support can continue until a child is 19 1/2 years old if they live with the parent who receives child support. Also, parents can agree to support their children beyond 18 years of age if they choose to do so.
Fact #2: Child support is not just a father’s obligation
Though historically fathers may have paid the majority of child support orders, present day families should expect that both of a child’s parents will have some responsibility for their financial support. Courts will look at parents’ incomes to determine who shall pay and how much they shall have to pay to provide financial support for their children. The facts of specific family law cases will influence child support determinations and individuals should not make assumptions about how their child support matters were resolved based on the outcomes of other cases.
Fact #3: Child support may be modified after a divorce or separation
Family law courts do their best to protect the best interests of the children whose legal matters appear before them. They base their decisions on the information that is available at the time they hear family law cases. However, circumstances can change over time and because of new information, orders concerning child support may need to be modified if they no longer serve a child’s needs. Parents should be aware that modifications may become necessary to continue to provide their children with the financial support they need.
This post is not comprehensive and only touches on several matters related to child support. No legal advice is offered herein. Help with child support matters should be sought from local divorce and family law attorneys who are familiar with readers’ specific cases.