Child support is a hotly contested issue during divorce. It carries big benefits for the receiving parent (non-taxable) and penalties for the paying parent (it isn’t deducted from taxable income). Furthermore, failure to pay child support can result in severe penalties. But there are a lot of misconceptions about child support; this post will go over some of the typical questions.

The general idea behind child support is that the non-custodial parents make payments to the child to ensure the non-custodial parent contributes to the raising of the child. The money is earmarked for the child’s expenses, such as medical bills, schoolwork, and the child’s entertainment. The reality is that the biological parent receives the funds and may spend them in any way to support the child.

This fact leads some non-custodial parents to wonder if they can arrange the agreement so that the child directly receives the support. Unfortunately, minor children are unable to receive child support directly ? the funds must go to the custodial parent. But there are exceptions in extreme circumstances. Furthermore, child support to college-age children can go directly to the child.

If you are engaged in a dispute over child support, you may want to seek the advice of a lawyer. An attorney can go over the everyday expenses and income streams that are accounted for in child support calculations. As illustrated above, calculating child support can be very complex. You don’t need to go through it on your own; a lawyer can help you.