Rockford Child Support Lawyer

Serving Rockford and the Surrounding Communities, Including Belvidere, Freeport, Loves Park, Machesney Park, Roscoe, Rochelle, Rockton, South Beloit, Candlewick Lake, Poplar Grove, and throughout North Illinois

Raising children is expensive.  The cost of housing, clothing, food, extra-curricular expenses, and college can amount to several hundred thousand dollars. The list seems endless, particularly if these costs are paid from the income of only one parent. As such, establishing child support during a divorce or separation can be critical to maintaining stability within each party’s home and providing for the needs of a child.

As a Rockford child support attorney with years of legal experience, I represent both custodial and noncustodial parents in child support matters. Regardless of whether you are a custodial parent who relies on child support or a noncustodial parent who has the burden of making such payments, I can zealously advocate for a fair arrangement that is in you and your child’s best interests. Call today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to learn more about your legal options.

How Is Child Support Determined in Illinois?

Under Illinois law both parents have a legal obligation to financially support their children, but not necessarily equally. Child support isn’t calculated by simply determining and splitting expenses.

In Illinois, child support issues are governed by the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (the “Illinois Divorce Act”) which directs the Court to apply “Statutory Guideline” percentages (depending on the number of children) to the “Net Income” (which is defined in 750 ILCS 5/505) of the non-custodial parent to determine the proper Child Support amount.

Can Illinois Courts Deviate from the Statutory Child Support Guidelines?

Even though child support calculations are formula-based, there are individual circumstances that factor into support awards (such as if the non-custodial parent is self-employed, gets paid in cash, or gets large fluctuating bonuses). As a result, under certain circumstances, the court can deviate from the Statutory Guidelines and allow higher or lower percentage amounts.

The following are a few factors that could lead to a deviation from the typical child support percentages:

  • High assets or income
  • Significant income disparities
  • Children with special needs
  • Willful unemployment or underemployment of a parent
  • A disabled parent
  • A military parent

If you are facing similar circumstances, as an experienced Illinois child support attorney, I can assist in building a compelling case for or against a deviation from the support guidelines or tenaciously fight to hold a party accountable for intentionally attempting to avoid support obligations through unemployment, underemployment, or concealing income. I also assist noncustodial parties who are facing demands for unreasonably high child support.

Is My Ex Entitled to Visitation if He or She Refuses to Pay Child Support?

Child support and visitation are not inextricably linked. Consequently, a custodial parent is not entitled to withhold visitation if the other party refuses to pay child support or falls behind on child support obligations. Instead, it is advisable to consult with an experienced Illinois child support lawyer who can explain your legal options and potentially request a modification of support payments.

I Lost My Job – Do I Still Have to Pay Child Support?

Most likely, yes.

Courts will not simply waive child support payment because a parent lost their job. Instead, the parent will be expected to find a new job quickly, as a child (or children) should not need to suffer because a parent lost their job and cannot find the “right” job quickly.

However, in some situations, there may be extenuating circumstances.  If an individual experiences an unexpected and significant financial hardship, such as the loss of employment or a costly medical treatment, they may become delinquent on their child support payments. In such situations, as a Rockford child support attorney, I can assist in requesting a reevaluation of your support obligations.

Raising Your Children Is Expensive; You Feel Stressed and Want the Divorce Over – I Understand.

The complexities of Child Support don’t end with finding all sources of income and applying a formula. Child Support is not deductible for tax purposes by the paying parent or taxable to the receiving parent. Child Support payments are intended to cover necessary and miscellaneous expenses (e.g., housing, food, clothing, medical, education, recreation, and vacation), but not all child related expenses.

Which parent is responsible to pay these other expenses such as health insurance, day care, and college educations must also be determined. Your children’s financial needs are real. You need peace of mind. There is help.

How I Help Reduce Stress and Make Sure the Child Support Figure is Accurate

You need a good detail-oriented Illinois Child Support attorney who isn’t afraid to roll up his sleeves and investigate all possible sources of income. I can help reduce your stress by taking on the full responsibility for investigating all sources of income, making sure the proper deductions are made to arrive at Net Income, and arguing for an upward or downward deviation from the Statutory Guidelines when appropriate.

I will also make sure the responsibility for the payment of other child-related expenses (such as health insurance, day care expenses, orthodontia, and private school tuition) not intended to be covered by Child Support is properly handled in the divorce.

You don’t need to stress over every detail. I can help.

I invite you to call me for a free 30 minute or paid 90-minute consultation.

Contact us today to request a consultation

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