Child support is defined as the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made from the non-custodial to the custodial parent, caregiver, or guardian, specifically for the care and support of children born of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. The theory behind child support is based on a policy that both parents are obligated to pay for the support of their children whether or not they are living with both biological parents. One parent may have primary custody of the children, where the non-custodial parent may be given visitation rights. In such cases, the non-custodial parent is obligated to pay a portion of costs involved in raising the children. Even if the paying parent is obligated to make regular payments, he or she may not have any authority or decision-making in the child’s upbringing. It is not necessary for the two parents to be married.
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