Welcome to the YoungWilliams Research & Case Law Library.  Use the filters below to select categories of interest to you.  Currently our Library consists of academic and government research articles and reports from around the country, federal opinions, and case law from states in which our full service child support projects are located: Colorado, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Wyoming.  Sign up to receive updates by clicking the blue  box at the left of the page.

Disclaimer:  YoungWilliams does not endorse the reports or opinions expressed by non-YoungWilliams authors, nor do we endorse the entities that initially released or published the materials posted on our website.

 

Research & Case Law

Hill v. Hill (Tennessee 2021)

October 2021

The trial court must follow the required procedure when modifying a child support order. The parents appeared before the court on post-divorce motions. The two children were emancipated at the time of the hearing. Child support was at issue. In an earlier hearing, the father had received custody of the son, and the court hadn’t ordered support. At issue was the father’s income. The father received an inheritance and used the money to pay for the children’s private school tuition. The trial court recognized the inheritance was income to the father but in the final order, the trial court found it would be unjust to count the inheritance as income since the father used it to pay for tuition. The trial court calculated support and entered a judgement in favor of the father for back support.

Child Support and Reentry

September 2021

Incarceration and the build-up of child support arrears are clearly linked. Incarceration of a paying parent causes child support arrears to increase and a high amount of child support arrears leads to incarceration. This article addresses ways in which the criminal justice system and child support should work together to ensure a successful reentry into society for parents. Reentering parents face challenges from institutional obstacles and state policies.

Integrating Procedural Justice Principles into Child Support Case Management

September 2021

The Procedural Justice-Informed Alternatives to Contempt Demonstration (PJAC) grant studied the effect of applying the principles of procedural justice to child support cases in which a non-paying parents qualified for a contempt action. This brief sets out information gained from the grant case managers about their experience working with the parents. Implementation of this model required a rethinking of the provision of child support services. The case managers had a smaller caseload, but the services were intensive.

Tigart v. Tigart (Tennessee 2021)

September 2021

A child support order can be modified when there is a significant variance, which means at least a fifteen percent difference in the current support obligation and the proposed support amount. In the original parenting plan, the parents agreed to an upward deviation in child support so the children could enjoy the same lifestyle. The mother filed to modify the parenting plan and for contempt. The father answered and filed a motion to set aside the divorce decree. The trial court denied the father’s motion to set aside but reduced support based on the father’s new amount of parenting time and his additional child. The mother filed a motion to alter or amend the judgment arguing there was no substantial variance in support.

Vanderveer v. Vanderveer (Nebraska 2021)

September 2021

The definition of income for child support is purposefully broad. All income, unless specifically excluded, counts as long as it is regularly received for the foreseeable future. The parents, who had two children, filed for divorce. The father’s income consisted of a base salary, an annual bonus, and the proceeds from stock shares. He received stock shares from his employer annually. The shares vested in the future, and as they vested, the father cashed them and used them for household expenses. In the division of marital property, the trial court divided the stock grants received during the marriage that were not yet vested. The trial court excluded any stock proceeds from the father’s income for child support. The mother and father both appealed the final decree. 

Davis v. Henderson (Mississippi 2021)

September 2021

When reviewing a lower court’s decision to terminate child support due to the child’s extreme actions, the proper standard of review of abuse of discretion. The chancery court terminated a father’s obligation to support his child based on the child’s refusal to have contact with the father. The obligation was terminated until the child resumed visitation with the father. The court of appeals reversed, finding the father at fault for the deterioration of the relationship. The Supreme Court reversed, finding the appellate court didn’t apply the right standard of review. 

Jefferson v. Jefferson (Mississippi 2021)

September 2021

Nontaxable federal payments for military members such as basic allowable housing (BAH), basic allowable subsistence (BAS), cost of living and a clothing allowance are income for child support. The parents filed for divorce. The father was a military member and received benefits on top of his regular salary including BAS, BAH, cost-of-living allowance, and clothing allowance. The father appealed, arguing these benefits should not be counted as income.

Toro v. Toro (Nebraska 2021)

September 2021

A trial court’s determination of income won’t be disturbed on appeal without a clear abuse of discretion. The parents filed for divorce. They had two children. The court had to calculate the father’s net monthly income for support. He worked construction and took side jobs for cash. He submitted his income tax returns for the last three years. The trial court used his 2019 tax return to calculate his monthly income and found the father has an earning capacity of $60,000. The father appealed, arguing the court should have averaged his income for the past three years.

Snowden v. Jaure (Wyoming 2021)

September 2021

A parent who chooses not to work can be considered voluntarily underemployed. The father filed to modify support based on an increase in the mother’s income. In her financial affidavit, the mother represented she had no income. She testified she had worked in the oil and gas industry, had been laid off due to the pandemic, and was choosing to stay at home with her younger children. The trial court reduced her prior earnings by twenty five percent and imputed her at that amount. The father’s financial affidavit showed he only worked 20 hours per week.

Johnson v. Johnson (Nebraska 2021)

September 2021

For child support to be properly before the court, the pleading must contain the right language. The original divorce decree granted the parents shared custody of their two children and set child support at zero. The father filed to modify custody and support and the mother counterclaimed for a modification of custody and support consistent with the Nebraska guidelines. The final order found neither party met the burden to change custody. The mother filed to alter or amend the order requesting the court address a material change of circumstances with respect to support. Following a hearing, the trial court entered an order for father to pay the mother. The father appealed.

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