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My childs mother and I have reached an agreement on child support. What can I do to set up the support order outside court?

Indianapolis, IN |

She has initiated the filing process but we reached an agreement on the terms before hand and I would like to get the process over with as soon as possible and avoid having to go to court. What can be done?

Attorney Answers 3

  1. A verbal or written agreement to modify the terms of a child support order is not enforceable unless it has been filed with the court and approved by the judge. Once the judge has signed off on the agreement, it will have the same effect as a court order. You will need to put the terms of your agreement in writing, have both of you sign and date it and file it with the court. You may want to speak with an experienced family law attorney regarding any additional language that would be helpful in the agreement -- such as determining the date of the order will be in effect, any arrears and how this agreement would impact any previous orders or agreements. It sounds like you are moving in the right direction. Good luck!

  2. I agree with my colleague's answer above. Another option to assist is to enlist the services of a family mediator to ensure any agreement and order is drafted correctly, and all of the necessary issues are addressed. This can also be more cost effective and the process is more cooperative. A mediator will also file the documents for you, Keep in mind; however, a mediator will not advocate for either of your positions or give you any legal advice, although he or she can answer general questions about the law. You will need to consult with your own attorney if you want specific legal advice to insure your interests are protected.

    Responses by Dawn M. Boyd, Attorney At Law, to inquiries on this site are based on the information provided and are for general information only. Any responses and information presented should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor establish the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.

  3. You are normally way better off retaining a local family law attorney to help you with this. The chances of the order not being handled correctly and causing problems down the road are too great.

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