Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have questions about estate planning or the probate process? Do you need to know more about family law in Dallas? Are you wondering if you have a personal injury case? Are unsure if you need a lawyer?

The Ashmore Law Firm, PC provides the answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about estate planning, probate law, family law and personal injury law. Please select a category from the box below to narrow your FAQ search.
 

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  • Paying Child Support For a Child That's Not Yours?

    The story we've heard one too many times: A father being ordered to pay child support and finding out months or years down the road that the child he is supporting is not his biological child.

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    The question then is, “What do I do?” or “How can I get out of paying child support now that I know the child is not mine?” The answer depends on several factors, some of which include when the father finds out, the case history and the best interest of the child.

    The establishment of child support in Texas is a very serious legal process that can be difficult to undo, and it can only be undone by going back to Court. Judges in the State of Texas take the establishment and ordering of child support very seriously. In the event that you are paying child support for a child that you find out is not your own, it is important to seek the counsel of an attorney to discuss your options.

  • How Do You Calculate Child Support?

    The Texas Family Code contains guidelines for the calculation of child support. The Court will first determine which parent is obligated to make child support payments. The Court will then analyze the statutory guidelines.

    The guidelines apply to situations where the obligated parent’s net monthly resources are $7,500 or less. The term “net resources” is defined very broadly and includes all types of income and resources.

    Payment Guidelines

    In cases where the obligated parent’s net monthly resources are $7,500 or less, the Court applies the following schedule:

    • 1 Child – 20% of net resources

    • 2 Children – 25% of net resources

    • 3 Children – 30% of net resources

    • 4 Children – 35% of net resources

    • 5 Children – 40% of net resources

    • 6+ Children – not less than 40% of net resources

    If the obligated parent has children from other relationships, then the above percentages may be reduced. Also, if the obligated parent’s net monthly resources exceed $7500, the Court may order additional child support to be paid.

  • What If My Spouse Is Not Paying Child Support?

    If your spouse is not making child support payments, you can file an enforcement action in a family law court. The enforcement action asks the court to enforce the court order that says that the spouse is supposed to be paying child support and the amount of child support they’re supposed to be paying.

    For child support only, you can sometimes ask that the spouse be held in contempt of court, fined, or even put in jail. You can also file enforcement actions to enforce a spouse to move out of the house, sell a particular asset or item, or pay off a debt. You could accomplish all these actions through an enforcement action in the family courts.

    For more information about child support, you can request our free report: Child Support in Texas.

  • What is Retroactive Child Support?

    Retroactive child support is when the Court orders a parent to pay child support for past time periods before the child support was ordered. The time period in Texas is generally 4 years.  The Court does have the ability to award less than 4 years of retroactive child support, but the presumption that the amount is reasonable and in the child’s best interest must be rebutted.

    Remember that the Court is not required to and does not automatically order retroactive child support. The custodial parent or the Attorney General must specifically request it. Also, if the obligated parent has previously been ordered to pay child support, the Court cannot order retroactive child support.

    Once retroactive child support is ordered by the court you must pay it. Failure to pay the support could result in other collection efforts or enforcement actions being taken against you.

    Learn more about child support by requesting our free report, Child Support in Texas.

  • Can I My Modify My Child Support Payments?

    Yes, in certain situations you are able to modify child support payments.

    If there is a substantial change in the circumstance for the obligated parent, then a petition may be made to the Court to review and modify child support.

    The laws surrounding child support and modification of child support can be complex and difficult to maneuver through. Our attorneys can assist you with these legal matters and ensure that your children are provided for to the fullest extent permitted under law.

    Learn more information about child support here.

  • How Long do I Have to Pay Child Support in Texas?

    In Texas, child support is generally paid by the obligated parent until the child is the age of 18 or until the child graduates from high school, whichever comes first.

    Child support laws and guidelines differ from state to state. If you are thinking about divorce or separation and there is a child involved, it’s important to be knowledgeable about the laws in your state.

    Find out more information about child support in Texas here.

  • What is Retroactive Child Support?

    Retroactive child support is when the Court orders a parent to pay child support for past time periods before the child support was ordered. The time period in Texas is generally 4 years.  The Court does have the ability to award less than four years of retroactive child support, but the presumption that the amount is reasonable and in the child’s best interest must be rebutted.

    Remember that the Court is not required to and does not automatically order retroactive child support. The custodial parent or the Attorney General must specifically request it. Also, if the obligated parent has previously been ordered to pay child support, the Court cannot order retroactive child support.

    Once retroactive child support is ordered by the court you must pay it. Failure to pay the support could result in other collection efforts or enforcement actions being taken against you.