In many child custody and support matters between unmarried parents, it can be some time before the parties are able to get their matter before a judge to enter an order as to custody and child support.
This can be tough for parties on multiple levels. For many unmarried mothers, they might be concerned about having the financial ability to care for their child.
For many unmarried fathers, they might be concerned about getting visitation with their child. They might be concerned about financial issues as well.
Every case is different and can result in varying factual scenarios. However, for fathers who want to be involved in the life of their child, one thing many unmarried fathers should consider is talking to an attorney as soon as possible.
During those discussions, it can often be important to go through informal child support calculations with their attorney based on what is known at that time. For many unmarried fathers, it often makes sense for them to voluntarily pay child support before an order is even entered.
Why would that be the case? Beyond simply helping take care of the child and the mother, this can often have a positive impact for many unmarried fathers in terms of the final result.
By paying child support voluntarily, they are often showing the family court that they are responsible and that they care. They are also showing that understand the importance of the situation and are stepping up. To the extent that back child support could be ordered if they didn’t pay, from a legal standpoint, they often help ensure that they won’t owe a large back child support amount.
Fathers who voluntarily pay some child support because it is ordered, oftentimes do better as it relates to custody, parenting time and/or visitation. This is because they often make a positive impression by stepping up financially without being ordered to do so. Ultimately, this could even have an effect on the final child support award as well.
Even if a father is seeking fifty-fifty or sole custody, they still should consider paying child support prior to an order — if the child is presently with the mother more than them. Paying child support without an order might ultimately paint them in a positive light by showing they care and are involved.
Obviously, fathers who pay child support without an order will want to keep careful records of what they have paid to ensure they get credit. This may mean keeping copies of checks, paying through money orders and/or mailing the payments via certified mail, return receipt requested, or taking other important steps to keep records. But paying child support without an order is often prudent for many unmarried fathers.
If you are a father who is concerned about child support, Stange Law Firm, PC can help. You can call 1-855-805-0595.