A Child Support Agreement is used by parents to lay out the details of how they will divide the financial burden of raising their children even though they are no longer romantically involved. The Agreement addresses issues such as paying child support, healthcare expenses, and additional expenses related to raising children.
Parents can use this document to come to a mutually satisfactory plan about how they will assign the responsibility of paying support that will be used for the maintenance of the children without needing to give up control of decision making to a judge.
Types Of Child Support Letters Cases
Knowing the type of case you have is crucial to understanding what to expect, who to contact for help, and how your child support works.
In general, IV-D, IV-A, and IV-E child support cases are "full service" cases where each state's Office of Child Support Enforcement helps to manage the case and assists the custodial parent with receiving the payments, including both current and overdue payments. In 2016, around 95% of the funds collected went to families, while just under 5% went back to the government to recoup costs that were paid for on behalf of the custodial families.
- IV-D Cases: In IV-D cases, the custodial parent is receiving assistance from the state's Office of Child Support Enforcement.
- IV-A Cases: In IV-A child support cases, the custodial parent is receiving public assistance from the state.In order to defray the costs of supporting the family.
- IV-E Cases: When children are being cared for by someone other than a parent, such as another relative or the foster care system, their child support situation is designated as an IV-E case.
- Non-IV-D Cases: Non-IV-D child support are cases where child support is established and maintained privately, such as following a divorce.
Understanding Non Court Ordered Child Support Agreement Letter
Parents can stipulate their own agreement regarding child support, but it must be approved by the court. In order for the court to consider reviewing the agreement, it must meet the following guidelines:
- There must already be an open court case between the parents.
- The agreement must contain the following information.
- Each parent is fully aware of his/her child support rights.
- Each parent is aware of what the guideline child support amount would be.
- Neither parent is feeling pressured or forced to agree on the stated amount.
- Neither parent is receiving public assistance or has applied for public assistance.
Legal Requirements For Sample Child Support Agreements
There are three basic ways to form a child support agreement:
Through formal negotiations between the parties, which typically involves having separate lawyers to represent each party;
Through “alternative dispute resolution” (ADR), which is an out-of-court process that may involve arbitration, mediation, or evaluation; or
Through a court child support order that is issued during a divorce or a legal separation proceeding.
It is also possible to obtain a temporary order for child support from a court. These orders may be issued at the beginning of a divorce trial, so that a child does not lack financial support throughout the process. Once the divorce proceedings have concluded, the temporary order can then be converted into a permanent order for child support.
Regardless of how it was initially formed, a child support agreement generally needs to be put in writing and signed by both parents in order for it to be enforceable. If the child support agreement was created out-of-court, however, it should still be submitted to a judge for court approval. Once a child support agreement is approved by the court, it is usually turned into a court order.
Overall, the purpose of a child support agreement is to make certain that your child is well provided for. Having an attorney review your agreement, can further assist you in achieving this important result.