If your child lives with you the majority of the time, you can apply for child support against the other parent. The amount of child support that a non-custodial parent will be ordered to pay generally follows certain child support guidelines unless the judge believes that following the guidelines would be unfair or inappropriate.1 To look at the Alabama child support guidelines, go to the Alabama Courts website.
The judge can stray from the guidelines and order a different amount of child support for many reasons - for example:
- the parent paying support has physical custody of the child for much longer periods of time than is normally seen by the court due to a shared physical custody or visitation agreement;
- one parent has extremely high transportation costs for purposes of visitation;
- there are college education expenses;
- the child has assets or gets unearned income;
- the custodial parent will not be claiming the child on his/her income taxes;
- due to either parent being unemployed or searching for a job, the childcare costs are at least 20% higher than the amount included in the guidelines developed by the Alabama Department of Human Resources; anticipated under the law;
- other facts or circumstances that the court finds contribute to the best interest of the child that is receiving the child support.2
You can find the forms needed to file for child support on the Alabama Courts website.
1 Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration, Rule 32(A)
2 Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration, Rule 32(A)(1), (B)(8)