Claudette-Jean Girard, Attorney at Law
Local 413-315-5518
Toll Free 877-622-6089

Family Law Attorney

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

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Child Support Archives

Understanding the consequences of failing to pay child support

When a Massachusetts couple with one or more minor children decides to end their marriage or relationship, one of the parents will ordinarily be required to make regular payments to the other parent to ensure that the children's basic needs are met. Some parents who are required to make such payments regard such orders as a nuisance that can be ignored at will. In Massachusetts, this assumption can result in heavy civil and even criminal penalties being assessed against the defaulting parent.

Massachusetts parents can be ordered to pay college expenses

Even when a Springfield, Massachusetts resident turns 18, they will likely still need a lot of assistance from their parents. After all, financial security rarely comes automatically to a person the minute they walk out of their parents' front door, particularly if they are planning on attending college. After all, college is expensive and continues to get pricier as the years go on.

Back child support can rack up interest quickly

Springfield, Massachusetts, residents probably already realize that not paying child support can lead to some significant penalties. One of the penalties is that the person who is behind in payments may get assessed interest on the delinquent amount of support, as well as incur a penalty fee. These penalties specifically apply when the Massachusetts Department of Revenue is collecting child support. However, a parent who is trying to collect support directly from the other parent can also request interest, among other penalties.

How does health insurance factor into child support?

Even with changes on the federal political landscape regarding whether health insurance is mandatory, most parents in Springfield realize how important it is for children to have access to health care. Aside from the fact that children of all ages need to visit doctors and other professionals as a matter of routine, many children face serious physical or emotional conditions that require ongoing care and treatment.

How does a second job affect child support?

Many people in Springfield, Massachusetts take second jobs, or do extra hours at their first jobs, in order to make ends meet. Sometimes, this is just a matter of having a little extra spending cash in one's wallet, while at other times a family literally cannot pay the bills without one of the members working a second job.

Child support and uninsured health expenses

Even when one or both parents have decent health insurance, Massachusetts residents are inevitably going to have to pay for some medical expenses out of pocket. These expenses can range from co-pays and deductibles to less frequent expenses that are more expensive, like braces. While all parents will no doubt have some of these expenses, they are particularly common when parents are raising a child with special needs.

Representing high earners in child support disputes

As a previous post discussed, many people who live fairly ordinary lives may earn over $250,000 a year between the parents. The Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines do not account fully for those over this amount. If this is the case, it is often prudent for a parent to retain the services of an experienced attorney. Support will be, to some extent, determined by the facts and circumstances of each parent, and these will have to be effectively presented to the judge who is hearing the child support case.

Options for servicemembers, veterans behind in support

When people in Springfield, Massachusetts, hear discussions about the enforcement of a child support order, they are often thinking about what can be done to a parent who does not pay. However, there are also circumstances in which a well-meaning parent who is facing some temporary hardships deserves protection from the full consequences of the state's child support enforcement powers.

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Claudette-Jean Girard, Attorney at Law
1380 Main Street, Suite 302
Springfield, MA 01103

Toll Free: 877-622-6089
Phone: 413-315-5518
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