Well-established legal standards determine child support and child custody during a divorce. The practical relationship between the two, along with social and cultural perception, may cause people to wonder why women pay child support less frequently and in fewer numbers than men. While specific reasons apply for each family, several financial realities explain the disparity.
Child custody contributes significantly to child support. The parent to whom the court did not grant sole or primary physical custody contributes a portion of income for the child’s basic living expenses. The court sets the amount based on various income models along with other factors and special considerations. Though Florida ranks above the national average for single-father families, single mothers run more than three-quarters of single-parent households and serve as the custodial parent by a ratio of 6 to 1.
Economic realities provide a second reason women pay comparatively less child support. Single-mother families live in poverty at a much higher rate than those led by single dads. Also, non-custodial mothers earn less than half as non-custodial fathers. Continual financial and emotional stress create a cycle that reduces the overall support single mothers can afford.
No child support agreements
Lastly, half of all custodial parents do not have a formal child support agreement. Consequently, they have no means by which to enforce legal requirements. Fathers, generally, fare better financially. Thus, they tend to sue for child support less often. In addition, non-custodial mothers tend to provide direct in ways other than financial, including groceries, clothes, and medical expenses, in the absence of formal agreements.
Who can guide you through the process?
Men and women both provide as the primary care providers after a divorce. Equitable legal terms for both parents can still impact them differently in their new roles while they try to act in the best interests of their children. An attorney familiar with how child support works can assist you in making the best decision.