Child Support Lawyers in Clinton County, Michigan
Can my entire paycheck be garnished for child support payments in Michigan?
Not exactly, but a large portion of it could be withheld by your employer if the court issues an income withholding notice. To find out how much could be taken out of your paycheck for child support payments including those that are missed, read on below or contact Clinton County, Michigan child support attorney Stuart R. Shafer today.
Children need both emotional and financial support from both of their parents, whether they are married or divorced. But if you happen to be divorced and have been ordered to pay child support, it is your duty to keep up with your payments or notify the court that you need the order to be modified if your circumstances change and you cannot afford the current payments you are making. Parents who fail to meet their monthly child support obligation might find themselves in a heap of trouble.
For example, if you fail to make your child support payments, the Friend of the Court, which is responsible for enforcing child support orders, could collect both current and past-due support payments from your paycheck. The Michigan Friend of the Court says that your employer is legally required to comply with income withholding orders and must send your support payments to the Michigan State Disbursement Unit within three days after it has been withheld.
Important: Not only might your paycheck be used to provide the child support and medical support the court ordered you to pay, but your “income from other sources such as unemployment benefits, Social Security benefits, independent contracting, workers’ compensation claims, and insurance claims are also subject to income withholding” as well.
So how much can my employer in Clinton County, Michigan withhold from my paycheck to satisfy my child support payments?
Under Michigan law, your employer can withhold no more than 50% to satisfy child support obligations. But the court won’t always take 50% of your income when it initially issues a child support order. Generally, the court will consider you and your ex-partner’s expenses and income before determining how much should be paid in child support each month. It is usually only after a parent decides not to pay their child support payments will it issue an income-withholding order to your employer who is then legally obligated to deduct the money from your check.
Important: When an order to withhold income is issued for child support payments, the order “has priority over all other legal processes for the same income, including garnishments and other payroll deductions (except tax withholding and other child support orders).” One exception to this is when an employee has filed for federal bankruptcy. If this were the case, the “law may require an employer to temporarily stop withholding income to pay child support.”
How can I lower my child support payments?
You could submit a formal request to the court to have your child support payments lowered but it would be best that you have a Clinton County, MI child support lawyer assisting you with this to ensure you file the proper documents. According to the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, parents have the right to request a child support order review every 36 months, however, if it hasn’t been 36 months and you need to submit a review, you can still file a court motion in an attempt to get your order changed.
Another way to get your payments lowered is by requesting that your child custody order is modified so that you are awarded more time with your child which would result in you having to spend less in child support payments each month. If this is something you have been considering doing and would like help with getting your child custody order modified, contact the Law Offices of Stuart R. Shafer, P.C., a child custody law firm in Clinton County, MI for help.
Anytime a parent wants to get a child custody order modified, they must also submit a formal request to the court requesting this. They should expect to have handy evidence that indicates why the current order that is in place should be changed, and this is something a child custody attorney in Clinton County, MI can help you with.
Now, if you need help getting your child support payments adjusted so that less money is withdrawn from your paychecks or you want to submit a request to the court to get your child custody order modified, contact Clinton County, Michigan child custody lawyer Stuart R. Shafer.
You can reach the Law Offices of Stuart R. Shafer, P.C., a Clinton County, MI child support law firm at:
1223 Turner Street, #333
Lansing, MI 48906