Michigan Child Support – What you need to know

Michigan child support law depends mainly on a precise formula which is described in the Michigan Child Support Formula Manual. The formula is also referred to as the Michigan child support guidelines. Michigan child support law is very much comprehensive. Child support in Michigan is computed by utilizing the Michigan Child Support Formula manual which is created and regularly updated by the Michigan Friend of Court Bureau of the Michigan State Court Administrative Office. Contact a Michigan family law attorney if you want to know details about Michigan child support, Michigan child support arrears,  or Oakland County support in Michigan.

Determining factors for calculating child support in Michigan

To determine the amount of child support, medical and child care obligations, following factors are considered under the provisions of the Michigan Child Support Formula Manual:

• Net income of father
• Net income of mother
• Number of children of the parents
• Each parent’s overnight parenting time
• Obligations of other support
• Custody of other children
• Costs for health care
• Costs for the care of minor children in the case

Some people assume that if they have joint custody or if they share equal time with the children, then there will be no child support for both the parties. This idea is not correct. The Michigan Child Support Formula manual counts each parent’s income and the health care costs individually. Therefore, one party can be under an obligation to the other party for child support even if they have equal parenting time.

Factors that are not taken into consideration for calculating child support in Michigan:

Lack of visitation of the parent paying the support:

Non-custodial parents often assume that if they don’t go to see their child, they will not have to pay child support. It is not true at all. Child support and parenting time are two different issues. Even if the parent paying the support does not apply his or her parenting time, he or she will still have to pay child support. Lack of visitation does not exempt a parent from paying child support.

Bills of the spouses:

Michigan Child Support Formula does not take into consideration the bills of the spouses for determining child support.
Unemployment of a parent: People often assume that a parent will not have to pay any support if that parent does not have a job. The idea is not correct. If a parent does not have any income, or is not employed, the Court can “impute” income to that parent. Imputation of income denotes that the Court will ascertain a parent’s capacity to earn a definite income and then makes the order on the basis of the amount of imputed income.

New spouse’s income:

If a party gets married with another person, income of that new spouse is not applied in the formula for calculating child support. But if the remarriage alters a party’s tax filing method, joint filing with the new spouse instead of single, it may make different in their taxable net income, which could ultimately modify the amount of support. Furthermore, if a party gets a child with his or her new spouse, it may affect the amount of support.

Calculation method of child support in Michigan

Michigan Child Support Formula Manual provides the detailed particulars concerning the calculation of child support in Michigan. Almost all Friend of the Courts in Michigan use Michigan child support calculators or any one of the two prognosticators, Springfield Prognosticator and Marginsoft Prognosticator, where you can put your particular information of the case as data input, and they generate a prognostication, or an output which gives you the proper amounts of support. These prognosticators which are applied by the Courts in Michigan can be purchased by the public and are available online and give accurate information if you input into them correct data of the Child Support case in Michigan.

Child support can be modified

At any time child support is specified in an order by the Court in Michigan may be amended in the later times, if the stipulations stated in the Michigan Child Support Formula are realized. The most important factor here is that child support can only be altered for the incoming days, and medications cannot be made for the past times. Thus, you need to file a Motion Regarding Child Support without any delay if you are going through a variation in the situations. You can do it on your own through the Friend of the Court or with the help of an attorney. Because child support can be modified at any time, if an agreement is done for no child support to a party, and one party comes to the Court for support, the Court may grant a child support order, despite the previous agreement between the parties.

Out Of State Child Support

Enforcement and modification of out-of-state child support orders are controlled by the Uniform Interstate Family support Act (UIFSA). For your convenience, each family law attorney in Michigan offers a free phone consultation. Contact us today by calling (248) 588-3333 or (877) 737-8800 toll-free. An experienced Michigan child support lawyer is waiting to speak with you about your legal matters.

Payment procedure of child support in Michigan

As per common requirement of Court orders of MI child support, payments are to be made through the Michigan State Disbursement Unit, which functions as the centralized payment and distribution center for child support in the state. The Michigan State Disbursement Unit also functions for the enforcement of child support in Michigan. You can make direct payments to a party without going through the Michigan State Disbursement Unit. However, in that case, it needs to be validated by the judge in your case. It is not possible to prepay child support in Michigan. If “prepayment” is made by a party, and the party entitled to get support returns to court for obtaining support, the Court will sanction a fresh support order ignoring the prepayment.

Enforcement support: Criminal/felony charges

The Friend of the Court is responsible for enforcing child support orders. Many enforcement methods, such as income withholding, tax refund offset, credit reporting, passport denial can be used if a parent does not follow terms of the order. If child support collection and enforcement methods become unsuccessful, felony non-support charge is generally issued against the parent in fault. The Friend of the Court can refer the case to the county prosecutor, who may charge the person who owes support with the crime of felony non-support. In some counties, the case may be referred to the Attorney General for criminal prosecution of felony non-support.

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