The determination of Child Support and Spousal Maintenance are important issues affecting your ongoing financial future after a divorce. When you’re approaching an upcoming trial it’s important to understand how and what the Court will look at to determine Child Support and Spousal Maintenance and whether you’ll be liable to pay or eligible to receive the same.
Child Support & Maintenance
- During a trial on Child Support and Spousal Maintenance, the court will hear extensive evidence on the parties’ finances and monthly expenses, including information about the following:
- Affidavit of Financial Information.
The parties will be required to file Affidavits of Financial Information prior to the trial, which outlines each party’s respective monthly income and living expenses and which will be reviewed by both the court and the other party. The information in the Affidavit will be subject to questions by both sides during the trial.
- Health insurance costs, including a breakdown of how much of the monthly premium is paid to insure the parties’ children
- Proof of Income such as tax returns, W-2s, 1099s, and paystubs
- Employment status
- In child support matters, the Court will also be interested in testimony and evidence that address other factors that may be included in the child support calculation such as:
- Who provides medical insurance for the family?
- Costs of childcare, including before/after school programs for the children
- Extra-curricular expenses and extra-education expenses for the children, such as club-level sports or tutoring
- Any other children, not common to the parties, that each party is responsible for?
- For spousal maintenance, the Court will look at the parties’ respective finances, the length of marriage, and standard of living, but will also look at other factors including:
- How much will it cost the non-insured spouse to obtain medical insurance?
- Is the requesting party capable of obtaining employment to meet their reasonable needs?
Even if you spent significant time as a stay-at-home parent during the marriage, the Court may still attribute some income to you, usually at minimum wage.
- Vocational Assessments and Medical Examinations.
Where one spouse is requesting spousal maintenance because they have not worked for an extended period during the marriage or are claiming a disability prevents them from working, it is not unusual for the other party to request for that spouse to be assessed or evaluated by an expert for their employability and earning potential (vocational) or a medical professional to assess the existence or extent of any claimed disabling condition on potential employment. These reports and possibly testimony from these experts will be considered by the Court in evaluating claims for spousal maintenance.
To discuss your child support and/or spousal maintenance situation more in-depth, please contact the attorneys at OWENS & PERKINS by clicking here or by calling our office at 480.630.2464 to schedule your FREE 30 minute legal consultation. We remain fully operational while practicing appropriate social distancing and cleaning regimes.