Myths Regarding Friend of the Court Services

  1. Child Support
  2. Payments
  3. Rights & Responsibilities
  4. Court Procedures
  5. Parenting Time
  • Myth: There is a specific age in Michigan where a child gets to decide where he/she wants to live.
    Fact: The preference of a child is only one of twelve factors when considering a custody change. The age and maturity of a child may be considered by the court when considering a custodial change.
  • Myth: Joint physical custody means equal parenting time with both parents and no child support.
    Fact: Joint physical custody may result in an array of parenting time arrangements to fit the needs of child/ren and support is calculated accordingly.
  • Myth: We each have a child living with us, therefore, neither of us should pay support.
    Fact: The number of children and their placement are only two issues considered when calculating the appropriate child support obligation. The child support guidelines also calculate a child support obligation based on each parent’s actual income or the ability to earn income.
  • Myth: If I can't see the children, I don't have to pay child support / If I didn’t get child support, I don’t have to send the children.
    Fact: Child Support and Parenting Time are considered separate issues for enforcement purposes.
  • Myth: If I send a letter stating I'm unemployed, the Friend of the Court (FOC) will change the amount I pay for child support.
    Fact: Child support can only be modified by either Party filing a petition, or requesting a review of support if it has been three years since the last review of support.
  • Myth: I am unhappy at work. If I quit my job and take a lower paying job or start my own business, child support will be reduced to reflect this change.
    Fact: If a payer of support quits a job, the Court may view the act as an unexercised ability to earn income and refuse to modify the support amount.
  • Myth: If I write a letter to the FOC saying I am injured and cannot work, child support will stop.
    Fact: Child support will continue to charge and the Friend of the Court will enforce support until the order is modified by the court. If this situation should occur, you should request a child support review (if child support has not been reviewed within the last three years) or file a motion seeking a review of support.