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Temporary Child Support

Dallas Lawyers Helping Parties Protect Their Parental Rights

Couples who have children together will often share living spaces and expenses. If they decide to split, one parent may be unable to afford the costs of providing food, shelter, and other necessities for their child(ren). While the law dictates that parents can seek child support, it can take months for a court to issue final child-support orders. Fortunately, courts can issue temporary support orders that allow parents to seek support in the interim, before their divorce is finalized. If you want to request or were asked to pay temporary child support, it is advisable to confer with an attorney to discuss your options. At McClure Law Group, our capable Dallas child-support lawyers are adept at helping parents obtain favorable outcomes in support disputes, and, if you hire us, we will advocate aggressively on your behalf.

Temporary Child Support Under Texas Law

Temporary child-support orders allow parents to recover support before a court issues a final child-support order. Notably, the court will only issue a temporary support order in instances in which there is already a pending lawsuit affecting the parent child relationship (such as a divorce, modification suit, or paternity action). In other words, either the parent seeking the support or the potential obligor (i.e., the parent who may be paying support) must file a child-custody or child-support lawsuit before the court will issue a temporary order.

The Texas Family Code expressly states that temporary orders, including for the temporary support of a child, may be issued for the child’s safety and welfare. Temporary orders are not subject to interlocutory appeal. In other words, because they are not final orders, the courts will not allow either party to appeal them; however, there are other ways to contest temporary orders through the appellate courts, such as by filing a petition for writ of mandamus. Temporary orders are also enforceable by the trial court. As such, if a party fails to comply with a temporary support order, they may be found in contempt. Further, the party harmed by the violation of a temporary support order can file a motion for enforcement, asking the court to compel compliance.

Factors Considered in Evaluating a Request for Temporary Child Support

As with final support orders, the courts will presume the Code’s guidelines for a child-support order should be applied. As with a final support order, the presumption is rebuttable. As such, if a party presents evidence that the guidelines should not apply, the court may choose to deviate from the guidelines (either higher or lower) in determining a temporary support obligation.

The guidelines establish that a court must assess the number of children that will be provided support pursuant to an order and whether the parent providing support has an obligation to provide for any other children that do not fall under the order. The court will then generally order the obligor to pay a certain percentage of their net income for every child they have to provide for, both in the subject case and those that are not before the court. There is a statutory cap on the amount parents can be ordered to pay, however, to prevent support obligations from becoming unduly oppressive. Since they are based on the same facts and evidence, in many instances, the final support order issued by the court will mirror the temporary support order.

Speak to a Knowledgeable Dallas Lawyer

Raising a child can be costly, and it is not uncommon for a parent to need financial support in the time between when they split with their co-parent and the time the court enters a final child-support order. If you need assistance with a temporary child-support issue, you should contact an attorney at your earliest convenience. The knowledgeable Dallas lawyers of McClure Law Group possess the skills and resources needed to obtain favorable results in support disputes, and if we represent you, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. We have an office in Dallas, as well as a secondary Collin-County office in Plano, where we are available by appointment. We frequently represent parties in child support cases in Dallas, Frisco, Fort Worth, Irving, McKinney, Richardson, Rockwall, and Garland. We aid people with family-law matters in cities in Dallas, Rockwall, Collin, Denton, Tarrant, and Grayson Counties as well. You can contact us via our online form or by calling 214.692.8200 to set up a meeting.

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