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Establishing or altering a child support order

Child support decisions can be contentious in Georgia divorce courts. Unfortunately, high-profile cases tend to shape the public's opinions about such issues. For example, celebrities often are subject to tremendous scrutiny when it comes to child support payments.

The child support claims of Bristol Palin, daughter of 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin, provide a case in point. The father of the younger Palin's child complained in public that he was paying too much in child support. The remark by the young man triggered an avalanche of online criticism directed at Palin.

The reality is that child support paid to Palin was calculated using child support guidelines established in Alaska, her state of residence. Child support guidelines exist in all states and provide the basic foundation upon which a child support order is implemented.

Child support guideline calculations are based on a consideration of each parent's wages. Some other factors also come into play, including the costs associated with child care.

When it comes to contentions about child support, those who pay often gripe that there is no way to control how the money provided actually is spent. Conversely, enforcing a child support order can be challenging. Although penalties for not paying support can be significant, enforcement of child support orders is not always consistent.

The legalities associated with a child support dispute can be complex. In addition, emotions are likely to run high when dealing with an issue that involves both children and money. Retaining a child support attorney may be a wise decision for a divorcing parent. A lawyer could help fight for the best interests of the parent and child involved.

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