Child Custody and Support Newsletters
In hotly contested custody cases, where the parents cannot agree on anything, courts often will appoint an attorney to represent the child or children of the parties to help resolve the custody issue. The decision to appoint an attorney is within the discretion of the court.
Courts may use the legal process of attachment to separate property, whether real or personal and place it under the control of the court when the owner of the property fails to comply with his or her child support obligation. In some circumstances it may also be used to bring a person before the court, compel an appearance, or arrest a fund in the hands of a third person who may be liable to pay it over to the court.
The Child Support Recovery Act, as amended by the Deadbeat Parents Punishment Act, makes it a federal crime to flee a state in order to avoid paying a child support arrearage. States use criminal contempt to punish parents who fail to pay child support upon a finding of an intentional failure to comply with a court order of support.
Recent years have witnessed a number of changes in the nature of marital and other domestic relations in the United States, with a concomitant modification in public attitudes toward such things as the status of children born outside of marriage. These changes have been accompanied by an evolution in the way in which the legal system views a number of issues related to family law. One such group of issues concerns the right of a putative father, that is to say, a man who is supposed or reputed to be the father of a child or children born to a woman to whom he is not married, or who claims to be the father of such a child or children, to assert an entitlement to custody of or visitation with such a child or children.
The changing nature of marital and other domestic relationships in the United States has been reflected in a corresponding evolution in the way in which the legal system deals with issues related to family law. One such group of issues concerns the child custody rights of a putative father, that is to say, a man who is supposed or reputed to be the father of a child born to a woman to whom he is not married or who claims to be the father of such a child.