Wheaton, IL Child Support Attorneys
Child Support Lawyers in DuPage County
Parents have a legal obligation, and an underlying desire, to financially support their children. Illinois is a percentage-of-income state, which means that, in most cases, the parent paying child support provides a fixed percentage of their income according to the number of children before the court. Although the judge has the discretion to deviate from the guidelines in some circumstances, this model basically ensures consistent and predictable results in a wide range of circumstances. A child support obligation can be discharged in almost any fashion that is mutually agreeable between the parents, and it can be reduced or increased as circumstances change.
At The Law Office of Judith Jenz, we strive to use a combination of prior court cases and existing statute law to craft a plan that is both in the best interest of the children, and protective of your financial and legal interests. Although attorney Judith Jenz routinely handles child support matters, your case will always get the personal attention that it deserves.
Child Support Laws
A court may enter both temporary and permanent child support orders. In most cases, the judge enters temporary orders a few weeks after the petition is filed and permanent orders when the divorce is finalized. The parent paying child support may be ordered to pay a percentage of their net incomes.
The scale for determining child support begins at 20 percent for one child and ends at 50 percent of income for six or more children. The judge can deviate from the guidelines based on:
- The financial needs and/or resources of the parents and children;
- Any child's special needs; and
- The standard of living the children would have had if the parents had not divorced.
In addition to basic child support, a judge may order additional child support for extracurricular and educational activities, unreimbursed medical expenses, and childcare costs.
Payment and Modification
Most child support orders remit payments to the court or to a state disbursement unit, which then delivers the funds to the receiving parent. However, the judge typically accepts whatever agreement the parties propose; for example, they may load the funds on a prepaid debit card.
A support obligation typically ends when children turn 18. However, if the child attends college, the court may order the parents to split educational expenses. Most divorce orders, especially if the children are far from college age, include a reserve clause which states that this issue will be decided at a later date.
To modify a prior temporary or permanent order, the requesting party must show a substantial change in circumstances that was not anticipated when the prior order was issued. Generally speaking, courts are willing to modify orders based on an involuntary change of circumstances, such as a change in employment status.
At The Law Office of Judith Jenz, we routinely represent families in DuPage County and neighboring jurisdictions. For a confidential consultation, contact Judith Jenz today at 630-202-8842. After hours and weekend appointments are available.