Child Support FAQs
Common Questions Answered by Alpharetta and Woodstock Child Support Lawyers
As child support lawyers serving parents in Alpharetta and Woodstock, we understand how confusing Georgia’s child support laws can be. While there are guidelines for calculating child support, these guidelines don’t apply in all cases, and your (and your spouse’s) personal finances will greatly influence the amount you are entitled to receive or have to pay.
These frequently-asked questions (FAQs) are designed to help you gain a better understanding of what you need to know as you start the divorce process. For legal advice custom-tailored to your personal circumstances, schedule a free consultation with one of our Woodstock child support lawyers.
Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQs) About Child Support in Georgia
Q: How is child support calculated in Georgia?
In most cases, parents will need to calculate their financial support obligations using one of Georgia’s child support worksheets. These are forms published by the Georgia Courts that can also be completed online using the Georgia Online Child Support Calculator.
However, when going through a divorce, it is critical that you not rely on this calculator or the child support worksheets exclusively. These resources are designed to help parents determine their presumptive minimum child support obligation; however, there are various factors that may require deviation from this amount.
Q: How long does child support last in Georgia?
The basic rule for the duration of child support in Georgia is that the obligation to pay child support ends on the child’s 18th birthday unless the child is enrolled in secondary school, in which case the obligation to pay child support may extend to the child’s 20th birthday. Our family lawyers emphasize “may” because child support can only be extended to the child’s 20th birthday if either:
- The parents agree (the parents can also agree to extend child support beyond the child’s 20th birthday); or,
- The court specifically orders one parent to pay child support until the supported child reaches the age of 20 (provided that the child remains enrolled in secondary school).
However, there are various exceptions. For example, the obligation to pay child support can end prior to the child’s 18th birthday if he or she gets married or upon the death of either parent.
Q: Does child support cover college tuition and expenses?
No. In Georgia, the courts cannot force parents to cover the costs of their children’s college against their will. However, divorcing parents can agree to make provisions to cover their children’s higher education expenses; and, if they do, their agreement will be legally enforceable.
Q: Are child support payments tax-deductible?
No. Similar to alimony, child support payments are not tax-deductible. Additionally, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) generally only allows custodial parents to claim their children as dependents on their annual returns.
Contact the Alpharetta and Woodstock Child Support Lawyers at North Metro Litigators
Do you have more questions about child support? If so, contact us to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our Alpharetta child support lawyers. Call 770-574-6391 (Alpharetta) or 678-264-6237 (Woodstock) to request an appointment, or send us a message online and someone from our firm will be in touch with you shortly.