If you are ordered to pay child support in Mississippi, there are guidelines that determine how much you will owe. The guidelines consider the income of both parents, how many children they have and their child custody agreement.
When the court reviews the income of both parents, it includes wages, salaries, bonuses and other types of income. The guidelines provide for a basic amount of child support, which can be adjusted based on the child’s needs. These include needs like clothing, food, housing, education and healthcare. If the child has special needs or high medical expenses, for example, the amount of child support may be higher to meet those costs.
The amount of support may also vary depending on which parent has primary custody of the child. If the family’s circumstances change over time, either parent can request a modification. Sometimes, this is because the parent paying child support receives a promotion or a new job with a higher income or because they lose their job and cannot make payments.
If the paying parent does not meet their child support obligations, there are legal remedies available. The court may order income withholding, meaning that the child support is automatically withheld from the parent’s paycheck. If the paying parent is expecting a tax refund, that may also be intercepted.
In other situations, the court may find the parent in contempt of court and issue fines and penalties, including jail time. This may occur where the parent repeatedly fails to pay what they owe.