Texas is one of several states that allows residents to file for divorce without obtaining an attorney. You can actually purchase kits that will walk you through the steps of filing. These kits show you everything you need to do and all the paperwork you and your former spouse must file. When looking for help on how to file for divorce Texas residents often have questions about child support, including how it works and what happens if they cannot afford to pay. You should first look at who receives and who pays child support in the state.
Who Pays Child Support?
Like most states, Texas requires that the noncustodial parent pay child
support to the custodial parent. The custodial parent is the one who has
primary custody of the child. Even if you have your child two or three
days out of the week, the court will still view you as the noncustodial
parent. The court will often ask that you make payments out of each
check, and you can even set it up with the payroll department of your
company to automatically take those payments out.
How Much Do You Pay?
The amount that you pay in child support depends on several key factors,
including your salary and the lifestyle of your child. If you raised
your child in a specific lifestyle and then ask to pay less, the court
will likely require that you pay enough to keep your child in that same
lifestyle. The amount depends heavily on your income too. Though state
laws allow the court to demand you pay more than 50% of what you make,
most will require that you pay a set amount that still provides you
enough to live on comfortably. Those who make minimum wage may pay well
under $100 every two weeks.
What if You Can't Pay?
If you cannot make your child support payments because you lose your
job, your work hours change or you face other hardships, you should let
the court know as soon as possible. The court can suspend or pause your
child support payments or even reduce the size of your payments. If you
simply stop making payments, the court can hold you in contempt, issue a
warrant in your name and even place you in jail. Make sure you know
everything you need to know about child support in Texas before filing
your divorce papers.