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Child Support Archives

The rules regarding child support in Massachusetts

Parents are obligated to financially support their children whether the child was born in or out of marriage or whether the parents are separated or divorced. Either of the parents can request child support. The request can also be made by the child's guardian. Usually, the non-custodial parent will be ordered to pay child support, but when the child lives with a guardian, both parents might be ordered to pay. In Massachusetts, the support obligation will continue until the child turns 18 in most cases.

Emancipation before the age of 18 and child support

A Massachusetts parent who pays child support and whose child has become emancipated might not have to continue with that obligation. Generally, children are considered emancipated when they reach the age of 18. However, there are other circumstances in which a child may become emancipated before this point.

How a disability can impact child support payments

If a parent in Massachusetts or anywhere else in America is required to pay child support, that obligation generally won't end should he or she become disabled. However, it may be difficult for a disabled individual to continue working, which may affect whether a parent with custody continues to receive support from his or her child's noncustodial mother or father.

Reasons child support may be modified

Children in Massachusetts and elsewhere in America are generally entitled to receive support until they reach the age of majority. When parents separate or divorce, a court may mandate support payments even if neither party requested them. However, if a parent does initially request child support, he or she may wish to stop the payments in the future.

Delinquent child support and father involvement

There are millions of fathers in Massachusetts and the rest of the country who do not reside in the same household as their children. The findings of a new study show that individuals who owe child support tend to have children with multiple partners, see their kids less often and work fewer weeks in the year.

Obama's child support rule allowed to stand

While incarcerated parents in Massachusetts jails or prisons are able to ask for a modification in child support based on a change in circumstances, this is not the case for parents in some other states. On Jan. 19, Barack Obama signed a rule requiring states to allow parents to ask for this modification. So far, the Trump administration has allowed the rule to stand although it is not known whether this will last. The rule was opposed in a bill introduced by House Speaker Paul Ryan, but the bill did not make it out of committee.

The importance of enforcing child support payments

As the Federal Child Support Enforcement Program continues to improve, getting more money for more families within the system, the number of single-parent households involved with the program has dropped. In 2014, fewer than 50 percent of custodial parents who were eligible to have child support agreements had them in place. Many of these single parents in Massachusetts and throughout the country may have lower incomes than two-parent households, and this can have an impact on the quality of a child's life, according to reports.

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