Child support could go up after state panel meeting

A state panel voted to review cost-of-living standards in Alabama, which could lead to increased child support payments.

Review of child support guidelines has led to award increases in the past

The Alabama Advisory Committee on Child Support Guidelines and Enforcement met in Montgomery on July 25 to review the state's child support guidelines, according to ABC 3340 News. The committee unanimously approved a measure to have an outside company look into increased costs of living to see whether child support awards should be increased in the state. According to the Anniston Star, similar reviews in the past have led to increased child support payments.

Outside company to look at cost of living

The 15-member board voted to look for a company that could determine what changes in the cost of living in Alabama have occurred since 2009, when the current child support guidelines were adapted. Child support awards are partly based on the cost of living in the state.

The review is conducted every four years and could lead to changes in child support guidelines, primarily in terms of the amount parents can expect to pay or receive for child support. In 2009, a similar review led to child support payments for one child increasing from $437 to $579 per month for a person making $3,000 per month. If the board ultimately decides to increase child support payments, the changes would first have to be approved by the Alabama Supreme Court.

Increases controversy

For some people who witnessed the board's vote, the decision to review child support guidelines was controversial. Some fathers' rights groups say that child support payments are already too high and should not go any higher. They say that many parents are struggling to keep up with those payments, with federal statistics showing that only 62 percent of child support due was collected in 2011.

However, others say that the increases are necessary to make sure children of divorced parents can maintain a healthy standard of living. They also contend that Alabama needs more severe punishments for parents who fall behind on child support payments.

Child support issues

Child support payments can become one of the most fraught and vexing issues following a divorce. Parents who are either paying child support or are recipients of such payments should understand that the formula for working out child support payments is highly complex in Alabama.

Because of this complexity, anybody who has a child support or related family law issue should contact an experienced Alabama family law firm as soon as possible. In many cases, relying on qualified legal experience is the best way to ensure that a parent and child's best interests are protected when trying to resolve a child support issue.

Review of child support guidelines has led to award increases in the past

The Alabama Advisory Committee on Child Support Guidelines and Enforcement met in Montgomery on July 25 to review the state's child support guidelines, according to ABC 3340 News. The committee unanimously approved a measure to have an outside company look into increased costs of living to see whether child support awards should be increased in the state. According to the Anniston Star, similar reviews in the past have led to increased child support payments.

Outside company to look at cost of living

The 15-member board voted to look for a company that could determine what changes in the cost of living in Alabama have occurred since 2009, when the current child support guidelines were adapted. Child support awards are partly based on the cost of living in the state.

The review is conducted every four years and could lead to changes in child support guidelines, primarily in terms of the amount parents can expect to pay or receive for child support. In 2009, a similar review led to child support payments for one child increasing from $437 to $579 per month for a person making $3,000 per month. If the board ultimately decides to increase child support payments, the changes would first have to be approved by the Alabama Supreme Court.

Increases controversy

For some people who witnessed the board's vote, the decision to review child support guidelines was controversial. Some fathers' rights groups say that child support payments are already too high and should not go any higher. They say that many parents are struggling to keep up with those payments, with federal statistics showing that only 62 percent of child support due was collected in 2011.

However, others say that the increases are necessary to make sure children of divorced parents can maintain a healthy standard of living. They also contend that Alabama needs more severe punishments for parents who fall behind on child support payments.

Child support issues

Child support payments can become one of the most fraught and vexing issues following a divorce. Parents who are either paying child support or are recipients of such payments should understand that the formula for working out child support payments is highly complex in Alabama.

Because of this complexity, anybody who has a child support or related family law issue should contact an experienced Alabama family law firm as soon as possible. In many cases, relying on qualified legal experience is the best way to ensure that a parent and child's best interests are protected when trying to resolve a child support issue.

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