McKinney Child Support Lawyer
Child support is a financial obligation mandated by the court, ensuring that both parents meet a child’s basic needs following a divorce or separation. In McKinney, as in all of Texas, child support is integral to family law and is designed to safeguard the child's well-being and quality of life. Child support is neither optional nor an obligation based on parental desires but a child’s right to benefit from both parental incomes as they would have if the family had stayed together.
At Petitt Family Law, we are legal advocates for parents and children in ensuring that Texas children impacted by separation, divorce, or lack of marriage get the benefit of the financial support they need and deserve. If you need legal help in securing, contesting, enforcing, or modifying fair child support obligations, our highly experienced family lawyer can help.
Get your confidential consultation with our McKinney child support attorney by calling (469) 716-6893 or use our convenient contact form to get started.
Overview of Texas Child Support in Collin, Denton, & Dallas Counties
The primary benefit of child support to children of divorce, separation, or whose unmarried parents do not live together is to provide them with the financial resources necessary for their upbringing. It helps cover food, clothing, housing, education, medical care, and other necessities. This ensures that the child doesn't experience a drastic shift in lifestyle or lack the means for proper growth and development when families split apart.
In Texas, the parent who spends less time with the child, commonly called the “noncustodial” parent, is generally required to pay child support. This payment is made to the custodial parent, who primarily cares for the child's day-to-day needs. It is usually presumed that the custodial parent supports the child through direct spending while under their care.
Texas Child Support Guidelines
The amount of child support is determined through guidelines defined by the Texas Family Code and enforced by the Texas Attorney General’s Office. The guideline amount is typically a percentage of the noncustodial parent's income, depending on the number of children to be supported and other factors. For instance, payment is generally 20% of the payer's net resources for one child.
The Attorney General’s Office provides a monthly child support calculator to help parents calculate payments. The amounts determined under these guidelines are typically deemed the correct payment.
However, instances can occur when the support could be higher or lower than the guideline amount. Factors such as the child's age, needs, ability of the parents to contribute, educational expenses, and any proven financial hardship can influence the final amount. Judges have discretion in determining child support and can deviate from the guideline if they deem it in the child's best interest.
Enforcement of Child Support in Texas
The Child Support Division of the Office of the Attorney General handles child support matters in Texas. They work closely with various entities, including employers and community organizations, to enforce child support orders.
Where a parent becomes delinquent in supporting a child, enforcement actions can be filed in the family law courts. Courts can impose such methods as wage garnishment, interception of tax refunds, suspension of licenses, or even jail time for non-payment.
Child Support Modifications
Child support orders can be modified after they are issued. However, to modify a child support order in Texas, you must prove a significant change in circumstances. This might include a substantial increase or decrease in either parent's income, changes in the child's medical insurance, educational expenses, or custody arrangements.
Melody handled my case with care & logic. She challenged me when I was leading with emotional rather than logic, and understood when she needed to pull back. She was an excellent partner through the whole process, and I have already recommended her to others.- Anonymous
Melody exemplifies everything that I needed in an attorney. She followed through on every aspect of what she said she would do. Along the way, she always kept my interests in mind when following up with the courts and giving me closure. All this in just a few short weeks before closing out the 2020 year during a pandemic.
In my previous experiences, I’ve always had to chase down my attorney or come up with the solutions on my own. Melody was the exact opposite of that. Replies were very timely, and she came up with solutions prior to discussing with me with any setbacks that would come up.
My only regret is not hiring her initially several years ago.- Anonymous
Melody was easy to work with, listened to what I had to say, and helped me navigate a complicated divorce. Her knowledge of the law made it easy to feel confident in our case. She was very professional and could not have been more thorough. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for a great attorney who is willing to fight for you.- Taylor
As a single father living in a different state, Melody was knowledgeable about Family Law regarding my specific circumstance. She was personable and well versed in jurisdictional law in Texas and interprets the law similarly to the Court. Melody was respectful of my want to minimize cost but did not cut corners either. Melody and her staff was was communicative throughout the process. You will not find a better attorney than Melody Petitt!- Darryl
Excellent, professional and knowledgeable staff. Always ready to serve your family law requests.- Ross
Thank you so much for all of your help! You and your team have been great and a huge help in aiding me to navigate through those difficult times. I’m glad it is finally over and I’m happy I had such an amazing team in my corner!- Ben
Melody and the firm’s staff gave us excellent assistance in our successful effort to gain custodial control of our grandson. She guided us through the process, timely filed all documents and gave us great representation in the court proceedings.- Steven
You don’t know what you don’t know. However, you do know when something is not working out. With that said, I went through a couple of attorneys before being represented by Melody Petitt and that made all the difference.
I will start off saying that the divorce process is like a game. And the law is the rule book, which is a constant that does not change. Where the game gets interesting are the players involved, petitioner, respondent and legal team. Every case is unique, yet some attorneys approach the process as if it’s all the same. However, in my case, we were dealing with a high conflict personality; and, it cannot be taken lightly. Unlike my prior attorneys, Melody jumped on my case and took the time to really understand my situation and what we were dealing with. She took the time to educate me on the law and how it applied in my situation, whether it was something I wanted to hear or not. The law is the law. She knew how to deal with the opposing party. Strategy was the key, and she was prepared for anything. She earned my trust and with that trust, she help make this process tolerable. Most importantly, she was able to get my case wrapped up in a timely manner with a desirable outcome. An outcome that would not have been possible otherwise. I highly recommend Melody Petitt.- Dai
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