If you have significant changes in your lifestyle, your employment or your income or even in your family relationships, child support might need to be be increased or decreased. This is one of those areas in family law that is always modifiable, if you have significant changed circumstances.
Child support is the ongoing, periodic payment made by a parent for the financial benefit of their child or children following the end of a marriage or other relationship. Child support is paid directly or indirectly by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent, a guardian, or the state for the care and support of the obligor parent’s children. In Arizona, we now call joint custody “joint parenting time” and both parents will share the responsibility of child support, one subtracted from the other, will then reduce the overall financial support responsibility. Often people are shocked by how little each party would pay when they share equal parenting time.
On the court website at www.maricopacounty.superiorcourt.gov, there are self-help forms that you can utilize to file your own papers to request and set up child support. Many people find these forms confusing and difficult to use. We can make that easy for you by helping you with the paper work and providing you limited scope representation. We can also provide an environment for you and the other parent to reach agreements through mediation or collaboration, with little involvement from the court, saving you time and money. While the court always maintains jurisdiction with respect to child support, there are many aspects that can be mediated and agreed outside court. This could range from setting an initial amount, agreeing to modification, or setting out the terms by which the amount overdue, called “arrearages”, might be made up or even forgiven in part. Once parties agree to the child support terms, it can be written as an order and submitted to the court for approval.
Since the mediated terms are now agreed with the help of a mediator at our office, court involvement to seek court order is less expensive than a court battle. The advantage of mediation is not just to save time and expense. A key advantage of mediation is that it allows for better and more meaningful solutions where your real interests are heard and considered. We would be delighted to help you resolve your child support challenges either by representing you or by providing professional mediation. Contact 480-777-5500 for a consultation and learn how McMurdie Law & Mediation can help you reach a swift and beneficial child support agreement.
Robin M-March 2016
Cristi’s experience and professionalism delivered a settlement far beyond what I hoped for.
Heather M – July 2015
Compassion for Mediation Over Two years ago I sought out for council to represent me in a custody case with my children’s father. We had a few sensitive issues with our case that required someone who was well versed in Family Law and had previous experience with special needs families. Cristi McMurdie was the perfect choice for that role. I met with Cristi on many occasions before our court hearing. The first day in court she corrected many errors a previous lawyer had made with our previous parenting plan. The judge ruled that the father and I needed to go… to a court-appointed mediator and a blah blah. Unfortunately, no negotiations were made on either occasion which lead us to going in front of a judge for another hearing. Cristi exceeded my expectation her commitment to Due diligence regarding our case. As months went on she really understood both sides of our case and knew this was something we could come to an agreement with her help out of court. We made an appointment to meet in her office with the father. She created an even playing field for both sides. She was able to create an atmosphere that was safe and she was determined to make sure we were both heard. With Cristi’s legal experience and knowledge she was able to tell us what was appropriate to the courts which made it easier to come to agreements with realistic goals to our parenting plan arrangements. I am happy to say at the end of that day I felt such a relief and felt confident in the parenting plan decisions we made that day. It has been almost two years and we are still following the guidelines placed that day. The father and I are able to communicate more efficient and have the best interest to heart, which is what is best for the children. Cristi’s compassion for mediation diffused the stress and anxiety that came along in my situation. Read more “Heather M – July 2015”