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Preparing to go to a child support hearing

There are many parents in New York who are not together with the other parent any longer. This could be because they are divorced or because they were never married in the first place. However, it does not matter why the parents are no longer together, both are still required to provide for their children. This is usually accomplished through a child support order.

Parents can agree to a child support amount, but if they cannot reach an agreement ultimately they will have a child support hearing and a judge will make the decision for them. So, it is important to understand how to prepare for a child support hearing and know what to expect.

First, it is important to attend a child support hearing. If someone does not attend the hearing there will be a default order issued based on any information that the judge has at the time. This could mean that the child support amount that is ordered will be much higher than a person can or should pay.

In preparation for the hearing, people need to bring financial documentation that accurately states their economic situation. This includes recent paystubs, W-2s, tax returns, proof of benefits received, whether they pay child support for another child, documentation on their health and dental insurance and whether they provide that for the children, proof of the monthly bills they pay and other household expenses and other documentation that proves their overall financial situation.

There are many family situations in New York and it is becoming more common for parents to be separated while they are raising their children. Even if they are separated, they are still required to provide for their child and most likely one parent will pay child support to the other. The amount of the child support is oftentimes determined at a hearing and it is important to be prepared for those hearings.

Source: www.nyc.gov, "Child Support Handbook" accessed on May 15, 2018

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