Finding solutions to the many issues that accompany a divorce can be difficult. Every couple is unique and may require solutions that are tailored to their specific family circumstances. Utah couples working through a divorce have multiple options available to help them to resolve the disputes that may arise from determining property division, child custody, child support and any other issues specific to their marriage.

Child support agreements are a large area of concern for Utah families. Like most other states, Utah has set guidelines for determining child support amounts. A child support order is usually written based on the amount of the noncustodial parent’s income and the number of minor children living in the household. A certain percentage of income is then required to be set aside for child support payments based on these two factors.

Some divorcing couples may wish to have a child support order that is more specific to their circumstances. Achieving this is a possibility and there are a couple of ways to go about getting this accomplished. The first option would be to try informal negotiations, or in other words, talking it out as a couple. This can be done with or without legal assistance. The second option involves alternative dispute resolution options, such as the use of a mediator or agreeing to collaborative divorce efforts.

Whether a child support order is determined solely on state guidelines or is negotiated in another fashion, it is important for agreements to be documented and finalized in order to create a binding contract. If needed, custodial and noncustodial parents alike may request a modification of this agreement if they experience a substantial change in circumstances at a later date. At the end of the day, Utah couples are the only ones who fully understand their family situation and what will work best for them and their children. Being able to negotiate terms specific to their circumstances will help as they transition into this next phase of their lives.

Source: FindLaw, “Child Support by Agreement“, Sept. 1, 2014

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