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Saint Paul Family Law Blog

The facts about paying child support from jail

When Minnesota parents pay child support, they may think they will always be able to afford these payments. If a parent goes to jail, however, he or she may not be able to pay child support.

Many people may think that if they are in jail, they do not need to worry about paying child support. CNN says this is not always the case and sometimes the payments accumulate while a parent is in jail. This is because many states do not see incarceration the same way they view unemployment. If a parent gets laid off from a job, he or she may ask to pay a lower amount in child support. Incarceration, however, is sometimes seen as a form of intentional unemployment and in this situation, people may not be able to request a modification to these payments. 

Fathers: Science shows the importance of your role

As a father, you know that you may have to face some forms of bias when you seek custody of your children. While it isn't fair, women are still made out to be better caregivers.

Bias shouldn't have a place in your case, and your attorney will do all they can to make sure you're not facing bias from the judge or others. However, having some helpful evidence on your side is a good choice.

Helping preschoolers process parental divorce

Parents in Minnesota who find themselves facing an impending divorce know that at some point they will need to break the news to their children. This may be one of the hardest conversations they will ever have but it must be done. What to say to a child about a divorce depends in large part on the child's age and stage of emotional development. When it comes to preschoolers, less can be more.

As explained by Today's Parent, children between two and five years old will need very basic and concrete explanations. Moms and dads should avoid discussing any problems between themselves and instead clearly and lovingly tell their children what to expect in their lives. For example, letting them know that they will still go to the same school and which parent will pick them up and which parent will drop them off is important for these youngsters.

Focusing on solutions with your former spouse

The good news is that you and your ex-spouse have committed to giving your child a structured upbringing in Minnesota. The bad news is that you are not sure how to handle disputes with your former wife or husband. There will almost certainly be differences in how you two will handle rearing your offspring, which can become bitter and unproductive if not handled correctly.

You may disagree strongly with how your ex handles taking care of your child. You might feel your child is misbehaving on account of having too much leniency while staying at the other parent’s home. Perhaps you feel your child is not getting homework done when appropriate, or is indulging in too much time watching television shows or playing video games.

How can I organize my child’s medical bills?

Divorced Minnesota parents can create provisions in their divorce agreements that state which of the two parents are to pay for medical bills for their children, if one parent or both should do it, and how much each parent is to pay. However, there are times when a parent is slow to pay his or her share. When this happens, you need to take important steps to organize medical bills and receipts that you will need when you seek reimbursement for your child’s medical bills.

First, FindLaw recommends that you retain your medical bills and receipts in the same place. Spreading them out throughout your home only increases the odds that you will lose one or more of your documents, or that you would have to waste time looking for your receipts. You might even forget about one of your bills or a receipt, which can cause great problems if you receive a past due bill or miss an opportunity to file for reimbursement.

Keep on top of your finances

As a father, you have a unique and important role in your child's life. Exactly how you decide to fulfill all of your responsibilities is up to you, but it may help to know that things often become much easier for our clients once they are able to gain some measure of control over their finances. At Huson Law Firm, PLLC, we work to put fathers in a legal position where they have access to their children — but having a plan for money could be just as important.

Just because the standard of living often goes up for men after divorce does not mean that is necessarily the case for you. Perhaps there was no divorce involved. Maybe you were never married to the mother of your child in the first place. Whatever your situation is, following a few financial principles could guide you through an easier and more rewarding fatherhood experience.

Tracking your expenses can help with child support issues

Making purchases is a common part of everyday life, so common that it is easy to forget about when, where or even what we have purchased from day to day. However, for Minnesota parents who receive or pay child support, keeping a record of purchases may take on greater importance. Fatherly explains that documenting and tracking your expenses could be crucial if you ever have to renegotiate child support, among other matters.

There are a few instances where documenting what you spend on your children can be of great assistance. If your ex-spouse suspects you are not spending support money on the children, you can prove you are spending the money in good faith. Also, if you are paying support and have recently been demoted or lost your job completely, you want to prove you have been doing your best to provide for your children and that you are not trying to falsely claim financial hardship to get out of support payments.

What is paternity fraud?

As a father in Minnesota, you have certain rights as a parent. Outside of these rights, you also have responsibilities, such as continuing to help care for a child in the event of a divorce. This is where paternity fraud can come in and affect your life. But what exactly is paternity fraud?

The National Institutes of Health have taken a look at paternity fraud, which is considered by some to be a mild epidemic in America currently. Paternity fraud is, in essence, the false claim that you are the father of a child when you aren't. This is usually done by a mother in the event of a divorce in which child support payments are to be made. Under law, only the legal father of a child is obligated to pay child support. Thus, in order to secure that money, it's possible for the mother to lie about paternity status. It's also possible for paternity fraud to occur unintentionally, if the mother genuinely does not know you aren't the father.

Children deserve both parents

Divorces in Minnesota often center on child custody agreements. These sensitive matters, along with property division, typically form the core issues at the end of a marriage. This atmosphere has the potential to cause a decent amount of posturing by one side or another, but the court systems tend to maintain a focus on the best interest of the child. 

The prevailing viewpoint is that children benefit from having both parents in their lives. Until significant scientific evidence comes to light that casts doubt on this general presumption, it is unlikely for courts to favor so-called sole custody agreements.

3 tips to help your kids during divorce

When children have to go through their parents' divorce, it's hard on them. They have to deal with the stress of the situation, and they may not yet have the tools to do so effectively. During divorces, children often lash out or act differently than normal, and that is largely due to the changes radically altering the lives they knew.

Every divorce is different, just as every person going through one will have different experiences. Here are a few things to do if you want to help your child get through a divorce more easily.

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