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Inflation and Child Support

The buzzword on the nightly news these days is inflation. Over the past couple of years we’ve experienced all number of supply chain issues, employee shortages, employer shortages, and an ever-increasing cost of goods. If you’ve tried to buy a car in the past 12 months you know that not only is it very difficult to find a car to purchase, once you do you’re paying a premium for it.

The policy of child support in Georgia is to place the child in the same financial position as a child of an intact family. Much research has gone into accumulating the data that drives the Georgia Child Support Worksheet which at it’s root seeks to set a baseline amount for how much a family of a set monthly gross income spends per child and then adjusts from there for all manner of variables specific to that family.

What the Georgia Child Support Worksheet doesn’t do is provide for dramatic increases in inflation, meaning the recipient of child support shoulders an ever increasing financial burden. We already know that child support pre-pandemic was largely not achieving its policy goals. So what’s a single parent to do?

What is happening as a result of inflation and the job market is that salaries are increasing. Perhaps not always at the same pace or rate as inflation, but employers are quickly realizing that they must keep their talent because there is not a labor pool to pull from.

In most situations, if it has been more than two years since your Georgia child support order was entered, you have the ability to seek a review and modification of child support. As we continue to experience record prices on everything from gasoline to groceries, we are witnessing increases in salaries to keep pace. A knowledgeable family law attorney can help you determine if those increases in salary will translate into an increase in child support or not.

David Purvis

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