Divorce and separation can raise a number of concerns and you may suddenly be faced with an overwhelming number of questions, especially in relation to the financial stability and well-being of your children. Seeking legal advice from an experienced child support attorney early on in the process could go a long way to putting to rest many of those concerns.
The main concern for you both, as parents, should be to try to work together so that arrangements can be made that will be in the best interests of the children, this includes the matter of child support. Child support can be a complex and highly emotive issue for many separated parents; however, both parents remain legally responsible to support their children financially.
This financial responsibility is unchanged by separation and divorce, where the children live, the amount of time they spend with each parent, or the remarriage of one or both of the parents. Financial responsibility is linked to the financial well-being of the children, rather than the success or failure of the parents’ relationship.
It’s not always easy to reach consensus on financial matters during separation, this is an emotional time for the family, with big feelings and little lives at stake. Even though you may not be able to agree on all aspects of parenting and child support matters, applying for court intervention does not need to be your only next option.
A child support attorney will be able to give you information and advice about collaborative family law that offers separating couples an opportunity to work together to find a fair solution to the issues they face during a relationship breakdown, including child support and parenting matters. It can facilitate effective communication as the collaborative process involves you, your partner and your respective lawyers sitting together to negotiate a satisfactory solution. All negotiations are conducted face-to-face with both parties present. This ensures that the parties retain control of the decision-making process and everything is open and transparent.
Coming to an agreement on the various aspects of your separation early on can have many emotional and financial benefits and it can also go a long way to you both maintaining a more workable relationship – which is beneficial to all parties involved.
The Family Law Act regards the best interests of the child/ren as the most important consideration and the law requires parents to use this same principle when making parenting plans. A specialised child support lawyer can offer you advice and guidance, discuss your options and responsibilities and help you to negotiate financial arrangements that ensure that you get the best possible outcome for the whole family.