Washington Court Records
What is Child Support, and When does it Occur in Washington?
Washington child support refers to the court-ordered, periodic payment made by a parent to financially support their child’s well-being. The state court orders such parents to pay child support, and it usually arises following the termination of a marital relationship.
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What is Washington Child Support?
Under Title 26 RCW of the Washington state laws, child support refers to a continuous payment made by a parent to the benefit of their child financially and ensure that the expenses for their needs are covered. Typically, child support occurs due to the legal separation of the parents. Most cases involve the non-custodial parent paying child support to the other parent for the child’s benefit.
What Does Child Support Cover in Washington?
Child support covers the necessities of the child and other expenses that contribute to its needs. Generally, expenses covered by child support in the state include:
- Medical Support: Parents are to provide medical support for the child. Medical support can include health care coverage, health insurance, or monetary medical support. The court may order both parents to contribute towards the medical expenses or excuse a parent from such responsibility.
- Basic needs: These are necessities including a place of residence, food, clothing, and transportation
- Educational Support: Such expenses cover the financial needs of the child in school for tuition, books, extra lessons, sports gear, and the likes.
What is the Average Child Support Payment in Washington?
The amount paid by a parent for child support in Washington may depend on some factors. The state uses a child support schedule to calculate the amount a parent will pay that is adequate to meet the child’s basic needs. Typically, the state uses the gross and net income of the parents to figure out how much they will pay for child support.
Using the child support economic table, the minimum combined net income of parents on the schedule is $1000. Persons earning such income are to pay a minimum amount of $50 for child support.
Under RCW 26.19.065, the child support obligation of a parent must not exceed forty-five percent of their net income. However, the court may order a higher amount of child support payment if both parents’ net income combined is above $12,000.
Interested persons can use the Division of Child Support Quick Child Support Estimator to obtain a quick estimate of their monthly child support payment. Persons may also the child support schedule automated worksheets for a more accurate and detailed calculation.
How Do I Apply for Child Support in Washington?
Usually, a court sets up child support if it arises from a legal separation case proceeding. However, interested parents can apply for child support services in Washington with the Division of Child Support (DCS). The DSC can also initiate an administrative child support order if there is ongoing legal action but the court is yet to file a child support order.
Interested parties are required to complete and submit the Child Support Application online or print out and fill the Child Support Referral form. Individuals are to mail the application alongside any supporting documents to the address:
Division of Child Support
P. O. Box 11520
Tacoma, WA 98411
Upon submission of the application forms, the DCS sends a written reply within seven to ten days. Applicants can call (800) 457–6202 for any inquiry about the enrolment process.
How Do I Get Out of Paying Child Support in Washington?
Individuals who pay child support in Washington can stop when the child reaches the age of eighteen or becomes emancipated. However, such parents may also challenge the court order if they believe the child support amount is unfair. Under RCW 26.19.075, the court may reconsider the child custody amount awarded due to the following reasons:
- Non Recurring income: If the court calculated a particular source of income that is irregular, it may deviate from the standard amount and have it reviewed.
- Additional sources of support: The court may reduce the standard amount paid by a parent in circumstances where the child receives monetary support from other family relatives, gifts, prizes, or has a unique source of income.
- Residential schedule: If the child resides with the parent obligated to pay for a more significant amount of time, the court may decrease their support payment. The court considers the expenses incurred by the parent during the time the child spends with them.
- Minor dependents from other relationships: The court may excuse parents from paying the standard amount if they have children from other relationships that they are obligated to pay support.
What is Back Child Support in Washington?
Back child support in Washington State refers to the past-due payments that a parent obligated to perform child support owes. The custodial parent is entitled to receive such arrears payments. Per RCW 26.18.055, Child support debts can become liens against the properties the debtor has ownership on.
How Do I Get Back Child Support Paid in Washington?
The Division of Child Support enforces back child support payments. Interested persons could claim back child support if the parent obligated to cover child support expenses fail to make the payments.
Interested persons can contact the DCS to get in touch with a Support Enforcement Officer (SEO) who can assist them with the process. Such persons may also refer the case to court and file liens against the debtor’s property or assets.
Is There a Washington Statute of Limitation on Child Support?
Under RCW 4.56.210, the statute of limitation on child support in Washington is ten years from the day the youngest child becomes eighteen years of age. The DCS cannot enforce any unpaid child support debts after the statute of limitations period elapses. However, parents with unpaid child support may sign a Waiver of Statute of Limitation form that allows the DCS to collect overdue child support payments indefinitely.