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I provide experienced legal guidance in family law, divorce and special education law. I represent parents and families throughout western Massachusetts.

How will you know if child support payments are complete?

According to available statistics, there has been a sharp rise in divorce cases throughout United States, and Massachusetts is no exception. As parents engage in a war of words, children may fear that their cloak of security is being lifted away. Children may ask themselves, "Where will I live and who will support me?" These same questions are asked by parents as well because, in many U.S. states, child custody is usually given to one parent while the other is expected to pay child support.

How does a parent who receives child support know if he or she has received all of it? Some parents do not receive the same amount of support every week or month, so the Massachusetts Department of Revenue has come up with a monthly calculation worksheet to help the parent who the receives the support determine whether the entire, ordered amount has been paid.

The first step in the calculation is to multiply the number of Fridays by the weekly support amount. For instance, if a month has four Fridays and the weekly support is $75, then the total amount of child support for that month is $300. This $300 can be split into various amounts depending on money earned by the payer. For example, the split could be $93.75 for the first three weeks and $18.75 for the fourth one or any other percentage split that may be calculated.

However, there is one instance when the amount of child support differs from the court-ordered one and that is when the parent has to support more than one child. If child support is not paid under any other circumstance, then a 0.5 percent penalty is imposed on the defaulter. Massachusetts also has and does use legal means of enforcing the court's order for child support payment.

Source: Mass.Gov, "How to Determine If You Have Received All Of Your Child Support," Accessed on Nov. 29, 2014

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