What is the Difference Between Spousal and Child Support?

What is the Difference Between Spousal and Child Support?

spousal and child support

Child support and spousal support are often confused with one another, but they are not the same thing.  Spousal support, sometimes referred to as alimony or spousal maintenance, is a predetermined amount of money awarded by a judge from one spouse to another spouse. A parent does not have to be married to receive child support from the other parent, but a spouse does have to be married to receive spousal support. Fass & Greenberg, divorce attorneys Garden City NY, will be able to assist you with any spousal support needs you may have. 

Child support is an ongoing payment from one parent to the custodial parent following a separation or divorce. Child support is just another type of support that Fass & Greenberg, family lawyer Garden City NY, can assist you with. 

What is Spousal Support? 

Spousal Support, also called alimony or spousal maintenance, is provided to the lesser monied spouse during a divorce to assist that spouse to provide for his or her needs. Which spouse is entitled to support is spousal support is determined by the court by reviewing the respective incomes of both parties.  In New York State, the correct amount to be awarded is determined by a mathematical calculation, which can be opted out upon special circumstances. 

The payor is the “breadwinner” of the family. Spousal support is, when not provided voluntarily, is awarded by the Court.  Any questions you may have regarding spousal support can be answered by the knowledgeable separation attorneys in Garden City, NY, Fass & Greenberg.

Types of Spousal Support 

New York State offers two types of spousal support. Legal separation attorneys will be able to help you with:

  • Temporary. A judge would award temporary alimony when a divorce is pending. 
  • Permanent. A judge would normally award permanent alimony.  The length of time for the award will depend upon the length of the parties’ marriage, but is sooner terminated upon the death of either party, or the remarriage or cohabitation of the payee spouse. The judge could decide that the payments be made indefinitely. Indefinitely doesn’t mean what you think it means, it usually means until the receiving spouse gets remarried or until the paying spouse passes away. 

What is Child Support?

Child support is the monetary support that is given by a parent to the custodial parent.  In New York State, child support is not a taxable income. Unlike spousal support, which can be used for virtually anything the recipient wants, child support should be used for the child, but that also includes general items such as food, housing, insurance, entertainment, and transportation.  Other items, such as health care, educational, and child care, are considered “add ons”, payment for which are in addition to the basic child support award.

Like spousal support, the amount of child support to be paid to the custodial parent is determined by a calculation which considers the income of both parents and attributes a pro rata portion of the total amount to each parent.  If you need Garden City lawyers to assist you in regard to child support, Garden City mediation attorneys, Fass & Greenberg, will be able to help you. 

The Length of Child Support

In New York State, the age of emancipation for a child for child support purposes is twenty-one, although if a child is still in college, agreements will mostly provide that the child support ends twenty-two.  If a child begins to reside with the noncustodial parent, then the child support must be modified before that parent can stop paying child support and begin to collect.  All such agreements must be formalized in writing, and divorce attorneys Fass & Greenberg can assist you with drafting such an agreement.

Consult With a Garden City Lawyer at Fass & Greenberg

If you are going through a divorce and are confused and have inquiries about the monetary matters involved, having a knowledgeable and expert litigation attorney can benefit you, as they can answer any questions or concerns you may have. Whether you have concerns about child support or spousal support, Fass & Greenberg, separation attorneys in Garden City, NY, will be there to advise you every step of the way. 

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