Child Support Vs. Alimony

When going through a divorce, there are terms being thrown around all the time, and two of the most commonly heard ones are child support and alimony. This is mainly because everyone is usually concerned over money during times like this, and rightfully so as divorce can be insanely expensive. Even though child support and alimony are commonly heard terms, there is a lot of misconceptions as to what these mean exactly and what you can do about them if you find yourself making enormous payments.

First, let’s talk about child support. Child support is mean only to be used for purposes of raising your children when you are not there to do so yourself in person. It is meant to maintain a standard of living between both households and to ensure that the child is receiving adequate care no matter of the circumstances of the parent they are residing with. It is NOT meant to be extra spending money for your Ex to use as she sees fit. Child support also typically, though not always, has a defined end point of when your child or children turn 18.

Alimony, on the other hand, is meant to be used by your Ex explicitly for her purposes. The determining factor in setting an amount for alimony is different for every divorcing couple and usually includes factors such as the education level of the spouse seeking alimony, previous and current jobs, the ability to maintain their current residence, etc. There is also usually an end point to alimony payments, though it is usually much more subjective than with the clear-cut age factor in child support. Usually remarriage is one clear point, but the judge will take all the previously mentioned factors into consideration as well as any other factors you make available when your alimony is set.

When you are submitting your financial paperwork during this process, it is crucial that you only submit your regular salary and do not include bonuses and overtime money earned. We do not recommend this to get you in trouble or lie to the court, but rather than these financial earnings are not consistent and are not controllable by you. If you submit them to the court, it is all but guaranteed that the judge will include them with the regularly reported earnings and set a higher amount of alimony and/or child support than you might otherwise receive.

For a Better Understanding of Child Custody Rights

When divorce happens, each parent inevitably wants to have custody of the child or children. Finding the right balance is not often easy and that is why the United States and other countries have laws pertaining to child custody. There are rights that both parents have regardless of who gets actual custody of the children.

The parents will need to work out a child visitation schedule, child support payments and parenting models. This should be for the best interests of the children and not of the parents. The laws are in place so that the children are protected from being used against the divorcing mother and father.

Although each state will have some differences in their child custody laws the child custody rights are pretty uniform. The State of Wisconsin actually looked at all of the factors that each judiciary system used to approve their state child custody laws. In doing so they came up with a list of children’s rights where it pertains to custody as well as visitation.

Every state has adopted these child rights when looking at visitation and custody. Both parents regardless of who has custody of the children should use these as guidelines. A child has the right to see both parents and have an ongoing relationship with them.

This is why we have visitation rights. Neither parent should use the child or children as a pawn in a divorce. They are human beings with feelings, not an inanimate object. So the best interest of the child should be placed before any other objections.

Each parent should give the child guidance and care when they are at their respective homes. The parents shouldn’t try to influence the children to see the other in a different light, no matter what the reasons for the divorce. If a change in the visitation must be made the matter should be handled immediately to avoid any problems. The children should also have the reason for the change explained to them so they don’t think it is something they did.

Just because a divorce has occurred, both parents still have an obligation to their children. The child custody laws are enforced so that the rights of the parents and children are taken into consideration. Either parent can try to gain custody of the child or children. In most cases the children won’t be split between two parents, they will be kept together. Depending on the age of the child they may have a say about who they live with, but again states will differ.

Fathers and mothers both have a chance to show that they should have custody of the child or children in all of the states. When sole custody is awarded to one parent the non custodial parent will have the right to see the child and visit with them.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be written that visitation is allowed as it is implied in divorce decrees. They would however, need to have it written in the decree if the non custodial parent doesn’t have visitation rights. Child custody rights are not arbitrarily denied, even if a parent is in jail or has a police record.