Once the proceedings are initiated, it may take several court dates (which could be several months), to understand the financial situation for both parties. In the meantime, once proceedings have been initiated but before a final child support decision is reached, a Support Magistrate may provide a temporary order of support. The temporary order stipulates that one party must immediately start paying a certain amount.
Because the Support Magistrate does not have all of the relevant financial information at the time of the temporary order, the amount of money ordered may be less than what will be stipulated in the final order.
In the proceedings that follow the temporary order, the Support Magistrate will examine all information possible income, expenses, and the child’s needs. Following this analysis, the Support Magistrate will issue a final order of support which will remain in force until the child(ren) covered reached the age of 21.