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TX family lawyerParents getting divorced in Texas are justifiably concerned about how the divorce could impact their children. In addition to having to possibly move out of the family home, the children must adjust to life with only one parent at a time. Parents likewise experience major transitions during divorce, especially in relation to their children, and one of the most important areas of change is child support.

Parents wishing to save time and money may wonder if they can create a child support agreement on their own without help from a court. To understand more about how establishing child support payments works in Texas, read on.

Can Parents Create Their Own Child Support Agreement?

Parents in Texas are encouraged to resolve issues in their divorce without litigating them in court. While this usually saves time and money, it also spares parents and children the anxiety and conflict of hashing things out in front of a judge.

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In most cases, child support terminates when a child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever comes last. However, there is one exception to that rule, and that is if the child is disabled. If a child is disabled and unable to care for him or herself, the Texas courts may order indefinite child support be paid to the primary parent. This is the only time that a Texas court can order a parent to continue making payments beyond the age of emancipation. If your child has a disability that prevents him or her from being able to care for him or herself, reach out to the Dallas child support attorneys at Clark Law Group for help modifying your child support order.

Proving Disability is Key

A person may receive or be ordered to pay child support after a child turns 18 if the disability either manifested itself or was known to exist prior to them reaching the age of 18. The disability can either be physical or mental. It is not necessary for the child to be institutionalized or hospitalized to have child support extended indefinitely.

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The Dallas courts take child support seriously, as it is payment used to help fund the child's needs and other expenses, including but not limited to clothing, food, shelter, entertainment, schooling, and extracurricular activities. When court-ordered payments are not being made, it can be frustrating to the custodial parent, if not more than a little worrisome. After all, that parent is surviving off a single income and must raise a child (or multiple) on that income alone.

If you are the custodial parent, and if your child's other parent has not and/or refuses to make child support payments, reach out the Dallas child support enforcement attorneys of Clark Law Group. We will advise you on the best course of action to take to recover payments owed to you.

Child Support Enforcement Tactics

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In determining child support, one of the main factors that the judge looks at is each party's income. Their income is then combined for the purpose of comparing it to the child support guidelines.

However, in most states, if the parents' total combined income exceeds $150,000, there are no guidelines for the judge to follow. It is at this point that the court must determine what amount of child support is in the best interests of the minor children.

As you can imagine, this can cause additional conflict during an already contentious point during the divorce proceedings. Fortunately, Texas law is not so arbitrary and there is a cap for how much a person's resources can be used when calculating child support in high-income cases in Texas.

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A child's college education is a big expense, one that many families spend the child's entire life planning and saving for. So when a couple separates, and when all of their assets are divided-including their bank accounts-funding a higher education is suddenly that much more complicated. Whether you and your spouse decide to divorce when your children are on the brink of leaving home, or whether you make the decision when they are still young, including a provision regarding college expenses is one of the wisest things you can do during your divorce.

At the Clark Law Group, our Dallas child support attorneys advise our clients to think of every possible child-rearing expense prior to the judge handing down a final child support order. By doing so, they can save themselves a world of headache in the future as the child grows and requires more resources to support.

The Language of the Order Determines Everything

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