For child support cases proceeding in a New York Family Court, the court, pursuant to statute, should make a temporary child support order, while the case is ongoing, of an amount that is enough to meet the needs of the child. According to the law, this should be done regardless of whether immediacy or an urgent need is shown. The law provides that even if the financial disclosure, which is required to be provided ultimately in the case, has not been yet provided, that the court should still enter the order. If the information that would be on the financial disclosure is already provided at the time the temporary order would be entered, such as income and assets of the respondent or the parent that should be paying child support, then the court should make the temporary child support order in accordance with the child support standards act formula. If the information is not yet available, then the child support amount to be paid should be based on the child(ren)’s needs.
Ultimately, when the child support order is finalized, the court needs to make the final order according to the child support standards act formula, unless an acceptable agreement is made for a different amount between the parties. The payor would then be given credit for any payments made under the temporary child support order that was in existence prior to the finalization of the case. At times, the temporary order might have been in an amount more than the final order. If that were the case, then the payor parent might have a credit against future support payments. The court is to make the amount of child support due under the final order retroactive to the filing date of the petition for child support. In cases where public assistance was involved, the order can go retroactive to the date that public assistance started. Often times there are arrears for child support due at the time the final order was made. The arrears may be because of the retroactive date that child support is due from or as a result of the possibility that the temporary child support order was lower than the final order. Both reasons might be applicable. Arrears, as well as the ongoing support payments, will need to be paid to the residential custodial parent as the child support order continues. Continue reading