Just as many individuals considering divorce or currently going through the divorce process wonder whether to seek alimony, many also wonder whether to seek child support. Although in most cases there is no question that the custodial parent should seek child support from the non-custodial parent to allow the custodial parent to adequately meet the needs of the child or children involved. However, in situations where the economic resources and earning potential of each parent is relatively equal, some parents may wonder whether it is appropriate or even necessary to seek child support from the other parent.
Fortunately, Georgia law provides an answer for those parents wondering whether to seek child support, and that answer is: yes. In fact, according to Georgia law, parents really do not have the option to waive, or not seek, child support. Because child support is a right that belongs to the child, child support cannot be legally waived by a custodial parent on behalf of the child. Bisher v. Jones, 267 Ga.App. 389 (2004). What this means practically is that a custodial parent cannot choose not to seek child support, and a custodial parent may not agree for the non-custodial parent to pay no child support.
However, in situations where both parents have relatively equal incomes, or in cases where other circumstances may make it appropriate for the non-custodial parent to pay very little or no child support, certain child support deviations may be used to ensure an equitable result. For more information on how to determine the most appropriate child support calculation in your divorce case, speak with one of our child support attorneys at Meriwether & Tharp.