Child support lawyers can make a big difference in the amount of support you get if you have out of the ordinary circumstances. If your situation is one where both parents have jobs where they get regular paychecks the standard support formulas work well for you. You may not like how the numbers come out, but chances are that is where you are going to end up. By now most states have worked through their formulas and guidelines enough to where they are pretty comfortable with them. You will see very little deviation in the average case.
However there are circumstances where support can be greatly affected by having a lawyer. These are normally in cases where one of the parents income and/or assets is not easy to determine. For instance, if one of the parents works for cash they normally are not upfront about their income. In those cases income is determined by looking at their lifestyle. How much income does it take to live the life they are living or to drive the car they are driving. In those cases a skilled lawyer can make a huge difference.
The other time a lawyer is critical is if one parent is a business owner. Business owners have the ability to shift their income and expenses in a large number of ways. They can push income into next year so the court doesn’t count it when making its determination. They can count things like cars and phones as business expenses to change the amount of their income. If they have a good accountant they can shift tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars into their business and legally disguise it so that it doesn’t appear as income on their tax returns. Again an experienced lawyer or a forensic accountant can unravel all of this and give the judge the real picture.
Don’t worry about the cost of the lawyer. Talk to him about it though, but many times your ex can be forced to pay the cost of your lawyer, especially if you take our advice on when to use them. Judges do not like parents who try to hide their assets.
How Do I Find A Child Support Attorney?
The best place to start is with your friends. In today’s day and age it’s likely that many of them have had interaction with a family lawyer. Ask them what they liked and what they didn’t like. Would they use their lawyer again? What about their exes lawyer. If your friend got raked over the coals maybe it was because of superior lawyering on the other side.
If you don’t get a good referral, you can check with your local bar association. Most of them keep a list of people in particular areas. Google your city + bar association and see what you find. Most of these lawyers will give a free or low cost consultation. One thing to ask the association is how people get on the list. In some locales these lawyers are primarily new lawyers trying to build a practice. That can be good or bad. new lawyers are often very talented and hungry and smart and creative even if they are inexperienced.
If you are still at a loss I recommend martindale.com
. This is the site lawyers use to research lawyers. Check the box that says “Feature Peer Review Rated” and you will get ratings from other lawyers and perhaps from clients also. It’s a good way to investigate any lawyer anyway. Please note that many good lawyers might not be listed in here for one reason or another or might not have any reviews, but it’s a good starting point.
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