Child support & maintenance

Reaching agreement on child support and spousal maintenance can be one of the most difficult aspects of separation and divorce.

Let us help you find a fair and workable child support and/or spousal maintenance arrangement

When it comes to resolving Child Support and Spousal Maintenance our focus is squarely on helping you get a fair, workable and just arrangement in place – as quickly as possible. In many instances, we encourage our clients to use mediation as an opportunity to reach an agreement and avoid the costly and emotional experience of going through the courts.

While mediation works well for many couples, there are of course instances where an agreement simply can’t be reached through mediation, or it isn’t appropriate for the family involved. Our extensive experience representing clients in the family court on child support and spousal maintenance matters, means that we get results and provide you with effective representation.

Lakey Family Law can help you work through your child support or spousal maintenance issues, so that you can move forward with your life. This includes:

  • Mediation and negotiation to help you reach agreement.
  • Preparing Child Support or Spousal Maintenance Agreements.
  • Providing advice and guiding you through the assessment process.
  • Reviewing and assessing an Agreement prepared by another firm.
  • Providing legal representation through the courts.

Child support and maintenance

Child support and ongoing maintenance is one of most complex areas to work through when you’re separating or getting a divorce.

There are basically three different ways that you can come to an arrangement:

  • Reach an agreement between yourselves, including how much is paid and how it is paid.
  • Have the standard legislated formula applied to your situation and administered by the Department of Human Services.
  • Have the matter heard by courts and an arrangement finalised by court order.

The key considerations that go into determining how much child support should be paid, include:

  • Each parent’s income.
  • How much money each individual parent needs to meet their own ‘reasonable’ expenses – known as a ‘self-support’ allowance.
  • The time the child or children spend with each parent – based on the number of nights per year.
  • Whether or not the parent, or parents, have any other child support cases or dependent children.
  • The cost of raising children (according to age based levels set by the Department of Human Services).

Spousal Maintenance

Often when couples separate or get a divorce one of the other big issues to work through is financial dependence and spousal maintenance. It is not uncommon for one party to be financially dependent on the other – often because they’ve been the kids primary care giver, or are unable to work for a variety of different reasons.

In these cases, where one person is unable to adequately meet their own financial needs, and the other person has the financial capacity to support them, spousal maintenance can be payable. But there are a host of different things that need to be taken into account, including:

  • If the couple has children – their age and who is primarily responsible for their care.
  • The person’s age and health.
  • The person’s ability to be appropriately and gainfully employed.

The key thing to keep in mind is that spousal maintenance will only be payable if the person paying it has the ability to, after they have met their own reasonable living costs.

Want to know more about child support and spousal maintenance?


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