February 05, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/
-- For three years now, a new type of family court in Minnesota's Hennepin County has been making great efforts to help many unmarried parents establish workable parenting-plans, as well as resolve child-related conflicts.
Otherwise known as the Co-Parent Court, this particular venue is focused on using unique problem-solving techniques to assist unmarried parents work together to raise their children - which in turn has led to more fathers being actively involved in their children's lives and a higher rate of child support payments being paid on time.
Benefits of Co-Parent Court
Specifically, the goal of Hennepin County's Co-Parent Court is to improve the overall well-being of children by not only creating personalized parenting plans for unmarried parents but by also aiding in the establishment of paternity and child support
- and so far, many of the results have been positive.
In fact, a recent University of Minnesota study, which examined over 700 mothers and fathers who participated on the Co-Parent program, found that an astonishing 87 percent of child support was paid when both parents actually completed the program. Conversely, only 69 percent of child support was paid when looking at parents who were part of the control group but did not participate in the program.
Unpaid Minnesota child support
Although the Co-Parent Court is making strides in collecting support payments for the children of many unmarried parents, the problem of unpaid child support continues to persist for countless other children of both unmarried and divorced couples alike. For instance, during the last quarter of 2012, the Minnesota Department of Human Services reported that $1.69 billion in child support payments were past due or in arrears.
However, it is important to note that just because payments are past due does not mean that one of the parents is actively attempting to avoid obligations. Indeed, overdue child support may be an indicator that payment amounts need to be modified downward due to a change in circumstances - such as a substantial decrease in the income of the liable parent. Although, alternatively, an upward modification may be needed if a child requires extraordinary medical treatment. Ultimately, every situation needs to be examined thoroughly in order to determine the proper course of action.
Regardless of whether you are a parent seeking to collect child support or a parent seeking to modify your child support obligation, it is often best to seek the counsel of an experienced family law attorney. A knowledgeable attorney can help ensure you child's well-being by outlining your responsibilities and simultaneously protecting your rights.
Article provided by Kathleen M. Newman & Associates, P.A.
Visit us at www.kathynewmanlaw.com