Many divorces involve highly disputed financial issues regarding spousal support and child support. One party is typically trying to get as much as possible, and the other usually wants to avoid it altogether. There is typically an answer somewhere in between that will be fair for everyone.

Erb Legal is a team of compassionate legal professionals who work with people during divorces. We understand Ohio laws related to spousal and child support and guide you through the legal process. Call us today at 330-249-1778 or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.

Tom Erb Jr. is the family lawyer you want in your corner.

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What is Spousal & Child Support?

When a divorce or separation occurs, the court must make several decisions regarding the couple’s finances, including spousal and child support.

Spousal Support

Often called “alimony,” spousal support is a monetary payment that one spouse makes to the other during or after a divorce. You don’t have to be divorced for spousal support to begin. If you are legally separated and no longer living together, spousal support might also be an option.

The purpose of spousal support is to eliminate an unfair discrepancy between the income of the spouses. A spouse who cannot support themselves financially might receive spousal support.

There are two types of spousal support, including the following:

  • Temporary Spousal Support – Awarded at the beginning of the divorce process, this form of support ends when the judge makes a final divorce decree that typically includes a new permanent support order.
  • Permanent Spousal Support – This type of spousal support may be time-limited or situational. The goal of permanent spousal support is to provide adequate financial help until both parties are independent.

Spousal support might be awarded to the spouse who sacrificed their career to care for the home or family.

Child Support

Child support usually goes to the parent with primary residential custody. This financial support pays for food, clothes, and other parenting expenses. The court considers the non-primary parent’s income and orders appropriate monthly payments.

How Long Does Someone Pay Child Support?

Child support may be temporary, often awarded immediately after a legal separation or during a divorce. This arrangement gives the primary parental caregiver enough money to provide for the children.

  • Temporary Child Support – Only lasts until the permanent order is in place.
  • Permanent Child Support – Incorporated into a parenting agreement or divorce decree.

Child support can be modified for various reasons when situations change for the parties involved. Child support typically lasts until a child turns 18 or when they leave high school. Some orders may extend in limited cases.

Modifications of Support Orders

Either party can request a change to spousal or child support.

As the cost-of-living increases, it may be possible to increase spousal support. Another reason for modification is the receiving spouse becomes financially self-supporting, thus negating the need for alimony.

As children grow, their financial needs often increase. The parent with custody might ask for a permanent increase with added costs of extracurricular activities, healthcare needs, and other variables.

Factors that Determine the Amount of Spousal Support Owed

There is no specific formula for spousal support in Ohio. The court will consider several factors on a case-by-case basis. Some of the factors considered include the following:

  • All income of both spouses
  • Property divided in the divorce
  • Earning ability (based on education, skills, job history, and employment opportunities)
  • Age and health of both spouses
  • Retirement benefits of each spouse
  • Length of marriage
  • Child custody arrangements
  • Standard of living during the marriage
  • Assets and debts of spouses
  • Time and expense it will take one spouse to become self-sufficient
  • Effect of alimony on taxes of each spouse

The court may consider any other factors that it deems relevant and fair as well.

Ohio Child Support Calculator

In Ohio, child support is calculated according to a formula. The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services has a Child Support Calculator that gives you an idea of potential child support.

The formula for child support in Ohio considers the following information:

  • Income of both parents
  • Number of other minor children in the household
  • Health insurance costs

Additionally, the court will consider any deviations from child support for extra travel expenses for visitation, excessive healthcare costs paid by one parent, or anything else one parent pays for that the other one does not.

A Lawyer Can Help You Get What You Need

An experienced family law attorney can help protect you and your child when modifying support agreements. Erb Legal can help you with spousal support or child support. Whether you will be the obligee (person receiving) or obligor (person paying), our team of skilled attorneys is here to counsel you.

Call Erb Legal today at 330-249-1778 or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.