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Can Military Disability Be Used For Child Support

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Does It Matter When The Childs Disability Began

VA Disability, Divorce, Child Support, Alimony, Garnishment & Apportionment

Can a parent be required to pay child support for an adult child who did not have a disability when the child reached majority age, but later became disabled? Of the courts that have considered this question, the majority have ruled that an adult child must have incurred his or her disability before the child reaches the age of majority. However, many courts have concluded that a child remains a minor if the child never is emancipated, no matter what the chronological age of the child may be.

Va Benefits Can Be Garnished Only For Spousal Or Child Support And Only Under Certain Conditions

Many disabled veterans become concerned about how much of their VA income they may lose during and after a divorce, due to property division, alimony, and child support. This article will address these issues.

Each state has its own laws governing divorce, child support, and alimony. But there are also federal laws governing the distribution of veterans benefits, and state family law courts are required to adhere to these laws. Federal law provides certain protections for veterans benefits.

I Heard That The Law Doesnt Allow Division Of Some Military

The law only allows division of disposable retired pay, which means the full military pension minus certain deductions. VA disability compensation is not a part of the military pension, and a court, therefore, cannot divide it between divorcing spouses as it could divide, for example, bank accounts and IRAs. Also exempt from division are Combat-Related Special Compensation and most military disability retired pay. If a servicemember receives any of those types of pay, the former spouses portion of the military pension would be reduced. However, a court could award a portion of these types of compensation for child support, alimony, or other types of family support

Outside of these exceptions, however, the law allows courts to divide a servicemembers disposable retired pay. Attorneys may wish to consult Silent Partner, a lawyer-to-lawyer resource for military legal assistance attorneys and civilian lawyers published by the Military Committee of the American Bar Associations Family Law Section. See, for example, . The best practical advice for this situation is to find an experienced lawyer who knows this area of law backwards and forwards or to make sure your lawyer partners with an experienced co-counsel.

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Help For Disabled Parents Who Owe Child Support

Parents with disabilities who are struggling to pay child support should seek a modification of child support before having their wages garnished. A modification may be granted following a legitimate decrease in income due to your disability. In such cases, the court will evaluate the nature of the disability, as well as the expected duration of the impairment.

If you need assistance navigating the system, research the child support laws in your state and seek help from a family law attorney with experience handling disability and child support cases.

Find Out How To Calculate Child Support In Georgia And How A Support Award Can Be Modified Or Terminated

VA Disability Benefits and Child Support: Can Benefits Be ...

In order to calculate child support, Georgia uses very specific guidelines based on an “Income Shares Model.” This model estimates the total amount that parents would spend on a child in an intact family unit, and then splits this amount proportionately according to the parents’ incomes.

Parents can access the current guidelines and a child support calculator through the Georgia Child Support Commission. Georgia’s child support guidelines are quite complex and detailed this article provides only a brief overview. If you’re having trouble navigating through all of the forms, or have specific questions, you should contact a lawyer.

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Adjustments For Child Care Or Health Insurance

The only expenses parents can automatically add to the basic support obligation are costs of children’s health insurance and any necessary work related childcare. These expenses are normally pro-rated between the parents. In the example above, if the noncustodial parent pays $150 for health insurance and the custodial parent pays $350 for childcare, 70% of the $500 total amount, or $350, would be the noncustodial parent’s responsibility and 30% of the $500 total, or $150, would be the custodial parent’s responsibility. The amount of $350 would be added to the noncustodial parent’s support payment to get a new payment amount. The noncustodial parent can subtract the $150 paid for health insurance, and the final support amountcalled the “presumptive support amount” in the guidelines. The noncustodial parent will pay this amount to the custodial parent.

There is no standard parenting time adjustment, but Georgia courts typically adjust the payment downward to account for a noncustodial parent’s increased direct expenses.

A State Statute Requires Support

A few states have passed statutes that impose a duty on parents to support an adult child with a disability. Any court deciding whether a parent must pay child support for an adult child in a state that has a statute requiring such support will have a very easy task ordering the continuation of child support payments if the childs condition satisfies the statutory requirements.

Other states considering this issue have enacted much broader statutes that impose an affirmative duty on certain family members financially to support close relatives who are unable to support themselves. These statutes, commonly referred to as filial responsibility statutes, have been used by courts to require an adult child to support a parent, siblings to support other siblings, and parents to support an adult child who is unable to support himself.

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Using Georgia’s Guidelines To Calculate Child Support

If you’re trying to estimate child support, you can use the worksheets and calculators provided by the Georgia Child Support Commission. The first step is to decide which parent is the “custodial” parent and which is the “noncustodial” parent. Generally, the custodial parent has the children more than half the time, while the noncustodial parent has the children less than half the time.

If parenting time is equal, you may not be able to determine which parent is custodial and which is noncustodial before first working through the financial calculations. In this case, the noncustodial parent will be the parent with the higher child support obligation, which is usuallybut not alwaysthe parent who starts out with the higher income.

Although the worksheets and calculators will give a support amount for both parents, only the noncustodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent. This is because courts assume that the custodial parent’s support amount is going directly to costs of supporting children.

Additional Resources For Veterans


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How Garnishment Affects Louisiana Specifically

Non-taxable disability compensation has been falsely assumed to be a benefit only to the individual veteran, not their dependents. With the high divorce rates in Louisiana, the state encounters a lot of child support cases. This bill will force legislation to ensure the financial stability of a veterans family after divorce, regardless of the veteran’s emotional attachment to the family after. Of course, there is opposition to taking any earned wages from veterans, largely based on the idea that only those that serve deserve to reap the profits. Marriage and children, however, are a commitment. It is a parent’s duty to provide for their children and financially support their spouse.

I Owe Back Child Support Payments That I Cant Afford To Pay Because I Was Not Awarded Disability Benefits That I Thought I Would Receive What Should I Do

If your child support agreement is based on disability benefits that have not been awarded by the Department of Veterans Affairs or the Social Security Administration you must return to court and request a modification of the child support order to reduce the amount of child support that you are obligated to pay. You must provide sufficient financial documentation to prove that your circumstances have materially and substantially changed before you can be granted a court order to reduce your child support obligation.

Unfortunately, you are still obligated to pay the child support arrearage. You can request that the court allow you additional time to pay the child support arrearage but the court will generally not forgive an amount that is past due.

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Va Disability In A Divorce

By Carl O. Graham

When a veteran has a service-connected disability, she may be entitled to receive VA disability payments from the Department of Veterans Affairs. If the disability rating assigned by the VA is under 50%, then a retired member must waive retirement, dollar for dollar, to receive VA disability.

Why waive retirement to receive disability? Two reasons – first, disability is not taxable, and second, the payments are not divisible by the a domestic relations court.

How Does Divorce Affect My Va Benefits Overall

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In a landmark Supreme Court decision in 1981 that reversed a lower courts ruling, the case of Mansell v. Mansell ruled that members/retirees retired pay was not subject to a divorce settlement in community property states like Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Community property states treat property that is acquired over the course of the marriage as jointly owned, and that communal property is divided evenly at the dissolution of the marriage.

In the majority opinion of Mansell v. Mansell, Justice Thurgood Marshall said We concluded that treating such pay as community property would do clear damage to important military personnel objectives. We reasoned that Congress intended that military retirement pay reach the veteran and no one else.

While thats true, Congress did take steps to illustrate that it did indeed expect courts to take retirement and disability payments into account when determining income.

Congress the following year passed the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act .

This law authorizes state courts to view disposable military retired pay as divisible, communal property in divorce cases.

Some divorced spouses may be eligible to enter military installations to access to military-sponsored health care, commissary, and PX.

USFSPA allowed disposable retirement income to be divided by state courts in a divorce settlement.

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If You Can’t Work Due To Disability Ask For A Child Support Modification

By Melissa Linebaugh, Contributing Author

When a person becomes disabled and can no longer work, it can become difficult to meet financial obligations. This is no less true for a parent who is responsible for child support payments. Fortunately, if you become disabled and begin to get Social Security benefits, you may be able to modify the amount of child support or alimony you are required to pay.

Overview Of Military Disability Pay

Under the USFSPA, military disability pay is excluded from the definition of disposable retired pay, and therefore, disability pay is not subject to the same rules of division in divorce. So when a service member waives retired pay in exchange for disability pay, former military spouses may lose out on hundreds or thousands of dollars they might otherwise have received in the division of disposable retired pay.

There are two different types of military disability pay, both of which are excluded from the USFSPA definition of disposable retired pay: military disability retired pay, and VA disability compensation.

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What Guidelines Will The Judge Follow To Determine Child Support

Child support is determined through a complicated calculation. Although Missouri has a Schedule of Basic Child Support Obligations, every case is unique. Typically, a judge will follow the schedule. The minimum payment is $50 per month. For each $50 more in combined adjusted gross income, the child support payment increases. For each additional child, child support payments increase as well. To determine the amount of child support, parents are required to fill out a Child Support Amount Calculation Worksheet and provide proof of the amount of their income.

Calculating Income And Deductions

VA Disability Compensation And Child Support

To complete the financial calculations, add up each parent’s monthly gross income, which includes most types of income, whether earned or unearned. Common examples are wages, commissions, military pensions, self-employment earnings, retirement account payments, disability payments, and investment income.

If you’re self-employed, you can deduct necessary costs of doing business from your gross receipts to get your gross income, but be aware that the allowable deductions are very limited and do not include everything allowed by the IRS. The manual worksheets include a separate form for calculating self-employment income. Gross income doesn’t include child support received for children from other relationships or public assistance, but it does include significant work-related benefits that reduce personal living expensessuch as housing, meals, or a car.

You can deduct child support you paid in another case and half of any self-employment taxes you paid from your gross income. If you have natural or adopted children from another relationship living with you, and those children are not subject to a child support order, you may also be able to deduct an amount for their support. There is a separate worksheet for estimating this amount.

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Va Disability Benefits And Child Support: Can Benefits Be Applied For Child Support

Learn about your VA Disability Benefits and Child Support. When a Veteran receives disability from the VA, its a great feeling to know that they have a steady tax-free income. The income that they receive aids in supporting themselves. There are many ways to claim your disability, and its your job to ensure your medical records support it. While claims are lengthy, in the long run, they are worth every penny. However, what happens to your VA Disability when you are being forced to apply for child support?

Life takes a turn, and youre finding yourself in the process of separation and eventually a divorce. What if your divorced spouse had a child together? What circumstances would you face throughout the process? While every state has various rules and regulations that the Veteran must abide regarding VA Disability Benefits and Child Support, the Federal level will get involved, and especially the VA will step in to ensure the proper protocol in place.

The primary purpose of the VA benefits is to support the Veteran the benefits also serve a mission to support their family as well. In this case, the spouse can order garnishments from the VA to have the Veterans benefits to provide support to their child.

  • About the Author
  • Disability Benefits May Be Divvied Up In Divorce

    Updated by Lina Guillen, Attorney

    The treatment of military disability pay in divorce is a complicated issue, which is governed by federal and state laws. The information contained in this article covers only the basics, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot replace personalized advice from a divorce attorney. If you have questions about military disability pay and divorce, you should contact a family law attorney with experience in military divorces.

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    How To Fight Apportionment

    After a decision is issued, either the veteran or the person filing for the apportionment can appeal VAs decision if they are unhappy with the outcome. Namely, the person filing for the apportionment can argue that the monetary amount decided on is too low to support their family. The veteran can appeal for a hardship reduction on the grounds that the apportionment will create a financial strain.

    Child Support For An Adult Child With Disabilities

    Can my veterans disability compensation be garnished for ...

    HomeTHE VOICEThe VoiceCraig C. Reaves, CELA

    We all know that a parent has a duty to support his or her minor child. But what about an adult child? Can a parent be required to financially support a child who reached the age of majority? Not surprisingly, that answer depends on where you live.

    Although it is easy to think that the laws of the United States are uniform from coast to coast, in reality that is not true. Each state has unique laws that apply to its citizens, particularly with respect to matters that impact families and children. However, by reviewing statutes and court opinions throughout the country, some general trends become readily apparent.

    This article explores the current status of the law in the United States regarding the following questions:

  • Can a parent be required to support an adult child who has a disability?
  • If the answer is yes to Question 1, does it matter when the child first became disabled?
  • If a parent is required to pay child support, can a parents support obligation be reduced or offset by public benefits the child is receiving?
  • If a child is the beneficiary of a trust, can the trust assets or income be used to offset or reduce a parents child support obligation?
  • If the parent who is subject to an order to pay child support is the beneficiary of a special needs trust, can the special needs trust itself be held liable to pay the child support?
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    Collecting Child Support And Enforcing Orders

    Once a judge issues a child support order, the obligor parent should pay child support as designated in the order. The obligor parent must pay child support on time, and today, can do so by one of several ways: cash, check, direct deposit, bank transfer, Venmo, or Zelle. It’s easier than ever to pay child support, but some deadbeat parents may still try to avoid paying.

    A custodial parent who isn’t receiving child support payments can contact Georgia’s Division of Child Support Services to have payments deducted directly from the obligor parent’s paycheck. The Division of Child Support Services is responsible for helping families obtain child support payment orders, locate absent parents, establish paternity if necessary, and secure compliance with child support court orders. Contact your local DCSS office or a family law attorney for assistance.

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