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In Missouri, both parents have a legal obligation to provide financial support for their children whether those children were born while the parents were married or not. The amount of support due is calculated on the Form 14 which was created by the Supreme Court of Missouri. You can experiment with this form at www.freeform14.com. This form will calculate the “presumed correct child support amount.”
As you can see from experimenting with the form, the presumed correct child support amount of is based on the parents gross wages, not net wages, the cost of child care, health insurance for the child, and other expenses. Right now in Missouri child support can continue past the age of 18 years provided certain circumstances are met. For example, if the child has started college immediately after high school and has provided the necessary documentation to each parent, or if the child is disabled, the support obligation can continue past 18.
The Family Support Division is the division of the Missouri Department of Social Services charged with collecting support from the paying parent and distributing it to the receiving parent. The Family Support Division and the Court each have the authority to determine the amount of support due. The court will enter orders for child support in both dissolution of marriage actions and paternity actions. The Family Support Division will only enter an order of support is one of the parents requests assistance of the agency. In the event the parents agree to a different amount, the court can order the different amount. When a different amount is agreed to by the parents, or if the court determines the presumed correct amount should be changed, this is called “rebutting” the presumed correct child support amount.
Failure to pay child support in Missouri is a crime and may result not only in criminal charges, but also in the loss of your driver’s license, your professional license, your hunting license and other consequences.
If you are the paying parent, it is possible to have the child support deducted automatically from your paycheck by your employer so you don’t have to write and send a separate check and you don’t forget to pay it timely. If you fail to pay child support regularly, the other parent may request the court to deduct the amount from your paycheck automatically, which request is often granted.
The receiving parent is under no obligation to account to you for how they spend the money. Remember, that having a child in your home increases all of the base costs of living from electricity, to water, toilet paper and shampoo, to food. The receiving parent is obligated to notify the paying parent when the child is no longer eligible for child support.
The statute regarding child support in Missouri is RSMO 452.340, and it requires the court to consider the following factors in determining whether to rebut the presumed correct child support amount:
(1) The financial needs and resources of the child;
(2) The financial resources and needs of the parents;
(3) The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved;
(4) The physical and emotional condition of the child, and the child's educational needs;
(5) The child's physical and legal custody arrangements, including the amount of time the child spends with each parent and the reasonable expenses associated with the custody or visitation arrangements; and
(6) The reasonable work-related child care expenses of each parent.
To make an appointment, please call me at 816-256-5440.
I am available to help you in the following Missouri counties: Jackson, Clay, Platte, Cass , Buchanan, Andrew, Davies, Caldwell, DeKalb, Clinton, Atchison, Holt, and Nodaway.
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