When parents separate, they can come up with a child support agreement template to have an arrangement for support for their children. This is because the children get caught in the middle when their parents separate.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is a child support agreement?
- 2 Why is it essential to learn about child support agreements?
- 3 What is a binding child support agreement?
- 4 What is a limited child support agreement?
- 5 Other types of child support agreements:
- 6 How to update the information on child support agreement or end it?
- 7 The purpose of child support agreement:
- 8 How to make amendments in a child support agreement?
- 9 Taking advice about child support agreements:
- 10 The basic elements of a child support agreement:
- 11 Writing a child support agreement:
- 12 Conclusion:
What is a child support agreement?
A child support agreement is a legally binding agreement between the divorcing parents. This agreement outlines the financial responsibilities of the parents towards raising their children. The terms and conditions of providing a support system to the child are mentioned in the agreement. Moreover, before parents get separated, they should draft a child support agreement in order to take care of their child.
Why is it essential to learn about child support agreements?
To set up a child support agreement of their own, separating parents can settle things by themselves. It is suggested to input all the details of your agreement in writing and affix your signatures. By doing this, you will avoid by misunderstandings that may come up later. Moreover, implement a written child support agreement letter is easier that includes the signatures of both parents.
An agreement between two parents provides some leeway on how much the amount of support will each of parent will give. You can also find out how much child support a judge would order one or both parents to pay. For negotiations, this can be your basis.
Also, judges have to base their decisions on the instructions of child support. In the Federal Child Support Guidelines under the Divorce Act, you can find sets of tables and rules. There are instructions in territorial and provincial laws too. Those that apply to you is based on your own predicament.
In the guidelines, you can find more information that may assist you in making decisions about child support. Also, it comes with various considerations that will provide you the authority that you’ve agreed on a fair amount for the child support.
What is a binding child support agreement?
It is a type of written document that includes the signatures of both parents. It indicates the amount, method, and the frequency of the child support payments. This agreement differs from a limited agreement in the sense that without any child support assessment, you can draft the child support agreement form and agree upon it.
However, the amount doesn’t matter as long as approved by the parents. Before you create a binding child support agreement template, prepare the following requirements;
- The parents should get legal advice separately on the disadvantages and advantages of making this type of agreement.
- The lawyer of each parent should give a signed certificate that states he has provided legal advice.
- To the binding agreement, attach the lawyer’s certificate.
You can only terminate this type of agreement due to the following scenarios;
- When it is created in writing by both of the parents
- When you make a different binding agreement
- If the court has ordered it
Before you end the binding child support agreement, it is important that you seek legal advice. You can always apply for an administrative child support assessment if there be a disagreement on the payments.
What is a limited child support agreement?
A limited child support agreement is another type of written child support agreement. Both parents also have to affix their signatures on it. This agreement specifies the details of the child support payments. However, this type needs an administrative assessment.
Again, it’s always recommended to seek legal advice before entering into the agreement. Here are the important components of a limited agreement;
- An administrative assessment must be in place
- Under the agreement, the amount of child support must be equal or greater than the amount provided in the assessment.
You can only terminate this agreement when the following situations occur;
- When you are going to enter another limited or binding agreement
- If both parents agree for the termination in writing
- The national assessment modifies by more than 15%
- When three years have passed
- In case, it is ordered by the court
Other types of child support agreements:
To reach an agreement on the amount of child support, child support legislation provides some leeway for parents. The agreement have to comply with the requirements of the legislation. It should also contain other relevant matters. You should also check the child tax credit worksheet.
We have discussed above two main types of child support agreement forms. Parents can apply to have the agreement accepted after drafting a child support agreement outside of court. You can draft the following other types of agreements;
These refer agreement made before to July 2008. From said date, they continue to have the same effect. These are still considered binding child support agreements, but they have different rules that govern them. Also, they have various termination requirements as against those indicated in binding agreements.
This also is a binding agreement signed by both parents. The sole purpose of this document is to terminate an existing binding agreement.
How to update the information on child support agreement or end it?
If you initially based the amount on your income as this may change, there is a requirement to recalculate your child support payments. Give an update on your income details to make sure that the amount of the child support remains fair for all parties.
Additionally, there are certain rules on updating information on child support. These are based on which of the child support guidelines apply to your predicament. For example, for updated information about your income every year, the Federal Guidelines state that one parent, a provincial agency or an “order assignee” can request. You should make this request in writing. Furthermore, your agreement may need that you give updated income information in certain situations or at certain times.
It is better for those who pay child support to give you updated income information even before you’re requested to do so. To verify the date when child support will end, you should also check your written agreement. When the child reaches a certain age or he attains a certain level of education, the termination of payments usually happens.
The purpose of child support agreement:
This agreement makes the separating parents able to draft a legally binding financial agreement for the financial support of their child. By having this agreement, the child is protected from the economic impact of divorce or from parent’s separation. In addition, the basic necessities of a child such as childcare, education, food, shelter, and more are supported. The child support agreement basically secures the future of the separating parents’ children.
How to make amendments in a child support agreement?
You may face changes in your life frequently. So, when these changes happen you should also modify your child support agreement but make sure the order of the agreement remains fair while changing.
It’s a fact that while divorcing, parents are under a lot of emotional and financial stress and it may also possible that they make wrong decisions for their children. Sadly, the results of their wrong decision will face by their own children and this isn’t fair for them. Keep the following things in mind while making any amendments in the existing agreement;
- If one parent isn’t paying child support then this doesn’t mean that you stop them from visiting or seeing the child. You don’t have any right to do so.
- In case, the one parent doesn’t allow you to see the child, then for this reason you can’t stop giving child support payment.
Taking advice about child support agreements:
In case, you have issues on child support or if you can’t afford more than two sessions then consulting with a family lawyer is highly recommended. The benefits of consulting with the family lawyer are;
- They inform you which instructions apply to your situation.
- They give you proper guidelines to calculate the accurate child support amount that you both have to pay.
- They tell you about your legal responsibilities and rights as well as your child’s best interests and rights.
- In case, you decide to go to court, they will tell you which documents you require.
There are referral services in almost all provincial bar associations. They have many lawyers that provide you consultation at free of cost or at a reduced price during your first visit.
The basic elements of a child support agreement:
The elements of a child support agreement may vary from state to state. But, let us discuss the most basic elements that are added to this agreement;
- A statement that states the responsibility of the parents to provide child support to their child in terms of periodic payments.
- A statement that states the responsibility of the parents to provide child support to their child in terms of the lump-sum payment.
- Specifies the physical residence of the children
- The specific amount of time that parents spend with their child
- A provision regarding the educational plans for the child
- The signatures of both parents.
Writing a child support agreement:
Here are some tips to consider to write a child support agreement;
- Demonstrate the type of arrangement that the divorcing parents have agreed upon.
- From the state code, specify any deviations.
- It is important to give a details explanation on the visitations and parenting plan.
- The agreement should be written in a humble language that shows your willingness to cooperate with each other.
- The noncustodial parent must pay a specific amount of money to the custodial parent for child support.
In conclusion, a child support agreement template is a legal document that comes in handy when parents get separated to support their children. By entering in this agreement, parents can avoid misunderstandings which might come up later.