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Auburn Child Support

Retain an Auburn Child Support Attorney

Although Washington state supports the rights of both parents, child support cases are often the most contentious. Balancing a child's financial needs with a parent's financial capabilities is a very complex process, which is why a skilled Auburn child support attorney at your side can help. We specialize in contentious child support cases and have decades of experience with the King County family courts. We'll fight for the best interests of you and your child.

Know Your Rights Under Washington State Law

Under Washington law, parents and their children have rights regarding child support. Let’s delve into several of them:

  1. You Have a Right to Protect Your Children: Children have the right to receive financial support from both parents to meet their basic needs, which Washington considers as food, shelter, clothing, education, and healthcare.
  2. You Have the Right to Seek Child Support: Custodial parents have the right to seek child support from the noncustodial parent to help cover the costs of raising the child.
  3. You Have a Right to Fair and Equitable Treatment: In child support proceedings, both parents have the right to fair and equitable treatment. This includes the right to due process, which encompasses notice of hearings and the opportunity to present evidence and arguments.
  4. You Have a Right to an Adequate Standard of Living: Children have the right to an adequate standard of living, which child support payments from both parents may support.
  5. You Have the Right to Enforcement of Child Support Orders: Custodial parents can enforce child support orders through actions like wage garnishment and tax refunds if the noncustodial parent fails to make payments as required.
  6. You Have the Right to Modification of Child Support Orders: Both parents have the right to seek modification of child support orders if there has been a significant change in circumstances, such as a change in income or custody arrangement.
  7. You Have a Right to Privacy: Both parents have the right to privacy regarding their financial information in child support proceedings. However, certain financial information may be required to determine child support obligations.
  8. You Have the Right to Legal Representation: In Washington, parents can seek legal representation in child support proceedings to help protect their rights and interests.

If you feel any of your rights have been infringed upon, contact an Auburn child support attorney.

Frequently Asked Questions About Washington Child Support Cases

In our decades of experience, we have learned the most common questions of parents facing child support claims. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked ones:

How Is Child Support Calculated in King County?

King County calculates child support using the Washington State Child Support Schedule. It considers both parents' incomes, which includes all wages, salaries, bonuses, commissions, and other sources. Certain deductions and credits, such as for other children in the household or childcare expenses, are also factored in. To determine the basic support obligation, the Courts use the total income of both parents and the number of children needing support.

What If the Other Parent Doesn't Pay Child Support as Ordered?

In Washington, if the other parent fails to pay child support as ordered, Courts can take several enforcement actions such as interception of tax refunds, wage garnishment, suspension of licenses (such as driver's or professional licenses), or even contempt of court charges, which could result in fines or imprisonment.

How Long Does Child Support Last in Washington?

In general, child support in Washington will continue until the child graduates from high school or reaches the age of 18, whichever happens later. However, there are exceptions for children with disabilities or other unique circumstances, where support may continue beyond this age.

Can Child Support Be Enforced Across State Lines in Washington?

Certainly, child support mandates issued within Washington are subject to enforcement beyond its borders via the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA). This legislation facilitates the enforcement of child support orders across state lines, promoting collaboration among the child support agencies of various states.

How is Parenting Time Considered in Child Support Calculations?

Parenting time, or the time each parent spends with the child, can affect child support calculations in Washington. The more time a parent dedicates to being with their child, the less they may be required to contribute to child support. Parenting time credits are applied to adjust child support payments accordingly.

What If the Child Has Special Medical or Educational Needs?

In Washington, courts recognize that children with special needs have additional expenses. These can include medical costs not covered by insurance or tuition for specialized educational programs. When such needs arise, the courts may consider them part of the basic child support obligation and order the non-custodial parent to contribute additional support to cover these essential expenses.

Can Child Support Payments Be Made Directly to the Other Parent?

Yes, as long as they comply with the court order or agreement, parents can directly pay child support to each other. Another way to make payments is through the Washington State Support Registry. Remember to keep accurate records of payments made and received to avoid disputes in the future.

How Do I Ensure Child Support Will Benefit My Child?

Concerned about their child's well-being, parents paying child support often seek assurance that the funds are directly benefiting their children. They want to know there are methods in place to ensure the money is used for the child's necessities, rather than rather than the custodial parent's expenses.

Can Child Support Payments Be Adjusted If My Financial Situation Changes?

Yes, child support payments can be modified in cases of financial shifts like job loss or income reduction. Parents can request a court review to amend the support order.

What If the Other Parent Refuses To Pay Child Support?

Suppose the other parent refuses to pay child support. The other parent might inquire about enforcement options to compel compliance with the support order and the potential consequences for nonpayment.

What Are My Rights If I Believe the Child Support Order is Unfair?

Parents have the right to question child support orders they see as unjust. To effectively contest the order, they must understand the avenues available to dispute the order and the criteria the court considers when determining child support obligations.

What Should I Do If I Suspect the Other Parent is Abusing Child Support Payments?

If there are concerns about misuse or abuse of child support payments by the custodial parent, it's essential to gather evidence and documentation to support these claims. Parents must learn what legal options are available to address the issue and how to protect the child's best interest.

Can I Contest Parentage If I Believe I am Not the Biological Parent?

Parents who believe they are not the biological parent of the child may want to contest parentage and seek relief from child support obligations. They may have questions about the legal process for challenging parentage, such as through genetic testing or other means, and how it impacts child support orders.

What If the Child's Needs Require Additional Financial Support Beyond Basic Child Support?

Suppose the child has special medical or educational needs that exceed the basic child support obligation. In that case, parents may want to know how these additional expenses are addressed in child support proceedings, where to get additional support for extraordinary expenses, and what factors the court considers in determining these amounts.

What If the Other Parent Refuses To Comply With the Child Support Order Due To Financial Hardship?

When financial hardship makes it difficult to meet a child support order, parents can explore options to seek relief or modifications. They'll likely have questions about their available options, such as temporary reductions or even suspending payments altogether. Additionally, they'll want to understand the evidence needed to support their request in court.

How Do I Protect My Rights If There Are Allegations of Abuse or Neglect By the Other Parent?

If there are allegations of abuse or neglect by the other parent, it's crucial to take steps to protect the child's safety and well-being. Parents may want to know how to report allegations to the appropriate authorities and what legal options are available to address custody and visitation issues considering these allegations.

What If the Other Parent is Incarcerated or Unable To Work?

Parents who are incarcerated or unable to work due to disability or other circumstances may have questions about their child support obligations and options for modification and may want to know how to seek adjustments to child support orders based on their current financial situation.

Can Child Support Orders Be Enforced If the Other Parent Lives in a Different Country?

Enforcing child support orders can be especially concerning for parents when the other parent resides in a different country, leading to questions about the available legal mechanisms for international enforcement and how to navigate the complexities of international law in such situations.

If you're ready to have your child support questions answered, our King County child support lawyers are here for you. Contact our Auburn law offices to protect your rights.

Client Reviews
Laurie has worked on my very challenging and contentious divorce and I could not have asked for a better family law attorney. She was able to handle all of the twists and turns of my case with ease. I highly recommend Laurie to anyone looking for an excellent, ethical and hard working counselor. Chandler
Laurie is an incredible divorce lawyer! She did an amazing job with my divorce, and it was a real dog fight the whole way. She is a true fighter. And you can tell that she really cares about her family law clients and the results that she achieves for them. John
My lawyer guided me through a very challenging time in my life when I was going through my divorce. She worked hard and explained every step of the way what was going on so I could understand the process. I was very happy with her work. Barbel