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Frequently Asked Divorce Questions
by Gabriel Cheong of Infinity Law Group

(617)273-5110         


How can you change the amount of child support you're paying?
The amount of child support you pay in the state of Massachusetts depends on the gross weekly income of both parents, the child support and insurance costs paid by each parent, the number of children covered by the order and any other support you are currently ordered to pay. Massachusetts also imposes a minimum support requirement on low income parents.

Once a child support order has been established, you can change the amount of support you pay by requesting a modification to the order. Your modification may be granted if:
  • Any of the factors used to calculate your support requirements have changed.
  • You and the child's other parent have agreed on a different amount of support.
  • The court finds that the current support amount is unfair or inappropriate under the current circumstances.
  • Your parenting time has changed significantly.
  • You have extreme, unavoidable personal expenses, such as healthcare costs.

source:http://www.mass.gov/courts/docs/child-support/2013-child-support-guidelines.pdf

Does how much you make affect child custody?
The state of Massachusetts supports the right of both parents to spend time with their children, regardless of how much income they earn, and income on its own won't typically be used as a factor in determining the custody of your child. However, if your income makes it difficult for you to provide a safe, stable environment for your child, child custody orders may be affected. Massachusetts courts make custody decisions based on the best interests of the child, so if the court determines your home to be unsafe, inappropriate, unstable or otherwise harmful to the child, sole physical custody may be awarded to the child's other parent.
source: http://www.mass.gov/courts/case-legal-res/law-lib/laws-by-subj/about/custody.html

Is same-sex divorce any different than regular divorce?
Federal law now requires all states, including Massachusetts, to allow same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriages are now afforded all of the rights and privileges available to heterosexual married couples, including the ability to divorce. During a same-sex divorce, couples must resolve all of the same issues that would be explored in heterosexual divorce, including the division of property, division of debts, child custody, child support and spousal support. Like any other married couple, same-sex spouses can choose to settle these issues on their own through mediation, or the case can go to court. If the case goes to court, all of the same guidelines that apply to heterosexual married couples will be used to settle the issues of the same-sex couple.



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