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PLM Family Law

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Understanding Child Support Obligations

All parents, whether married or unmarried, have a duty to support their children. Likewise, children have a right to receive support from their parents. When parents separate or divorce, child support obligations must be established to ensure the children’s needs continue to be met.

Whether you are seeking child support from your child’s other parent or are facing child support payment obligations, the Fargo family law attorneys at Parvey, Larson, and McLean can help.

Determining Amounts

Both North Dakota and Minnesota, like all other states, have developed detailed child support guidelines to determine appropriate obligations when parents live in separate homes.and to enforce already-established support obligations.

Ultimately, family law courts have the final say and may adjust the calculated amount up or down, based on the child’s needs and best interest.

Income Models For Child Support Purposes

Unlike some states that consider each parent’s income, North Dakota uses a single-income model to determine appropriate child support amounts. This means the payor’s gross income is used to determine the guideline child support obligation. The recipient parent’s income is not generally considered, except in very limited circumstances.

Minnesota utilizes a “dual income” or “shared income” model to determine appropriate child support. This means both parents’ incomes are considered in determining the correct obligations for basic support, medical support and child care support.

A Trusted Family Law Attorney: A Valuable Resource

People often have more questions than answers when it comes to child support. Some of the questions we commonly hear from our clients include:

  • What does gross income mean?
  • What happens if I’m self-employed and my income fluctuates from year to year?
  • Who pays for health insurance?
  • Who pays for day care? How can child support be modified?
  • What about extracurricular activities?
  • Can I challenge the child support calculation?
  • Can a child support obligation be modified in the future?

All cases are different, so getting help from an attorney is essential to determining clear and personalized answers. When working with an attorney who is experienced and adept in handling North Dakota and Minnesota family law cases, including child support matters, you can have the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have a skilled advocate in your corner.

Let Us Hear From You

Meet with a family law attorney whom our clients trust to handle child support, regarding initial orders, modifications and enforcement. Turn to Parvey, Larson, and McLean, PLLC, serving clients in and beyond Fargo, North Dakota, as well as in neighboring communities in western Minnesota. Call 701-347-1383 or send a message to request a consultation.

Helpful Online Resources

Also, see the following resources about child support in North Dakota and Minnesota: