New Mexico Child Custody & New Mexico Child Support
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Whenever children are involved in a divorce, New Mexico family courts, as their counterparts do across the nation, strongly advocate in favor of the best interests of those children, and will often base their decisions on those interests. New Mexico courts also encourage the parents to cooperate and compromise in working out an agreement on raising their children after the divorce. If the parents are unable to agree, the court will decide issues of custody, support, and visitation based on what it deems best for the children involved. The following headings take a look at New Mexico laws governing child custody and child support.
New Mexico Child Custody:
New Mexico courts will do everything possible to lessen the emotional impact on children of divorcing parents. If the parents cannot agree on a plan for custody, the courts will decide what is best for the children, and will generally place importance on the willingness of either parent to encourage a relationship between the children and the other parent, as well as any history of violence or abusive conduct by either parent.
New Mexico Child Support:
Child support in New Mexico is determined in accordance with the Income Shares Model for child support, where each parent's income is considered in relative proportion. The support amounts calculated from each parent then help decide which parent must pay the other in order to maintain the correct proportion and provide for the needs of the child.
These guidelines are not always followed, but a decision to follow a different standard will require supportive evidence showing 1) all the factors that affect the parties financial obligations differently, and 2) how applying a standard other than the Income Shares Model will more effectively preserve the best interests of the child.
The factors that can be considered here are numerous, and include but are not limited to the following:
- Pre-dissolution or pre-separation standard of living that the child enjoyed
- Monetary support provided for other family members
- Debts arising during the marriage for the child's benefit
- Imputed income to a party who is voluntarily unemployed for the child's benefit
- Court-ordered payments for health care and education for the child's benefit
- Children's independent financial resources, if any
- Education, training, and/or career opportunities of the parties and/or ability to pursue those things
A lawyer can help you understand and organize your rights and responsibilities in terms of raising your children after divorce. A lawyer can also serve as your advocate and/or counsel when negotiating a parenting agreement. You can find a lawyer at:
New Mexico Divorce/Child Support/Child Custody Lawyers:
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