Michigan Divorce Lawyers: Michigan Child Support
During your divorce, the payments you will be required to pay will for child support will be calculated and collected by the Friend of the Court in Michigan. The entire process of getting a divorce is complicated and scary. Having an experienced divorce attorney can make the process less stressful for all parties.
Over $1 billion dollars in child support is paid out each year in the state of Michigan which equates to almost 1 million children being processed in the system.
Since there are so many families shuffling through the court system it is essential to have someone who will be an advocate for your case. Our attorneys will patiently walk you through the steps and give you the personal attention you deserve along with helping you understand how to best navigate the system.
2017 Michigan Child Support Updates
The Michigan Child Support Formula has been updated and there are some changes that you should be aware of when calculating child support.
Some of the major changes are:
- High-income deviation factor has now been removed
- Allowable deductions for self-employed and business owners have been further clarified
- Reasonable health-care costs have increased to 6%
- Employer reimbursements for certain educational benefits are no longer counted as income
- Employer contributions to pension and/or retirement plans are no longer counted as income
Issues involving child support can be tricky! You should have an experienced attorney on your side to assist you with all of your questions and concerns. Contact Grewal Law PLLC today for a free consultation!
Uses of Child Support in Michigan
Child support should be used for the everyday care of a minor. These expenses may include things such as clothing, food, housing, utilities, medical expenses not covered by insurance, extracurricular activities, and any other items related to a child’s needs.
The parent receiving the support payments is usually not required to provide information of how each dollar is spent. The Michigan Child Support Formula manual outlines all the uses for child support in more detail. However, if there are concerns over the misuse of child support make sure to contact an experienced divorce attorney in your area right away.
How to Calculate Child Support in Michigan
In Michigan, the calculations of payments for support are determined using the Michigan Child Support Formula. The mandatory formula takes into account income of the parent who will be paying along with the support provided by the other parent before determining how much will be owed. The final amount paid will also be impacted by the number of nights a child spends with each parent. Expenses considered for the formula include how many minor children are involved in the case, income of each parent, any alimony being paid along with the payment of support for any other children.
Income is determined for most people based on W-2 earnings, however, individuals who are self-employed or who are unemployed can make it more difficult to determine the final amount due for support. The Michigan Child Support Formula does have ways to determine payments for these individuals too.
While everyone’s income is impacted by everyday expenses there are some things not examined when determining support payments. Rent or mortgage payments, car payments, retirement account contributions and other common expenses do not influence how much child support someone will be awarded. As your lawyers, we will help you understand what items are examined in the formula and what items will be excluded in the calculations.
Making Child Support Payments
When child support has been given in a divorce settlement, payments will be handled through the Friend of the Court Bureau. The MiChildSupport portal online allows you to look at your assigned Friend of the Court office, to see your payment summary and to view upcoming court dates.
As a parent receiving payments, most child support is dispersed electronically through the Michigan State Disbursement Unit. While serving as your divorce attorney we can help you navigate the system and ensure you understand the process from start to finish as a person paying or receiving payments.
Most support payments come directly out of a parent’s paycheck. These are automatically deducted through an Order for Income Withholding issued by the court. The orders can also require payments through unemployment or retirement income payments. In addition, if child support is past due it can be taken out of state or federal income tax returns. If a parent is behind in child support it may be reported to the credit bureaus, the individual may be denied a passport renewal and the parent may even be charged with a felony.
Under Michigan law, child support payments end once a child completes high school not once they reach the age of 18. The law allows for support through the age of 19.5 if the child is still attending high school. In any other circumstances, support ends once the minor child reaches the age of 18.
Get Child Support Help in the Lansing Area
Dealing with the amount of support paid or received for the care of your child can be upsetting, so you deserve to have a team of experienced Family Law Lawyers who will advocate for you.
If you are looking for family legal advice during a divorce please contact us today for your free consultation at 517-393-3000