I’m Getting Divorced, But I Have a Newborn Baby. What Should I do? (Pt 2)

Parent and newborn
Having a newborn baby can bring lots of unique challenges for a family, including how to manage a divorce.

Welcome back to our discussion on divorce and how it can be uniquely impacted  by having to parent a newborn during the split. As we discussed in the previous article, child custody is an important issue to keep in mind if you’re planning to get divorced. You should also make a point of seeing an experienced  Oakland County family law attorney as soon as possible, to make sure you’re on the right track to begin with. (Remember, this can be a complicated process here in Oakland County!) It is not necessary to wait until the baby is born to begin strategic planning. The sooner, the better.

But custody and visitation are only the tip of the iceberg. There are so many other factors that come into play when you’re ending a marriage, and you have a very young baby. Next up we’re going to be looking at child support, which is also a very important issue you’ll need to address as quickly as possible.

Child support usually goes to the parent providing the daily care

Many Oakland County families have one parent continue working, while the other parent stays home when a baby is born. Daycare is expensive and long periods of separation can be very unsettling for new parents. So having one parent stay home as the primary caregiver is very common. In most cases, it’s the mother. And when the child in question is a baby and the mother is breastfeeding, this is almost always the case. The Michigan Child Support Formula is mandatory for calculating child support. It takes into account lots of important factors including the income of each parent, the number of overnights that child spends with each parents, day care expenses and more.

Divorce often doesn’t change much on that front, though. If one parent is working to support their child while the other parent provides them with the daily care they need, then chances are the working parent will pay child support while the other parent becomes the primary caregiver. That doesn’t mean, as the primary breadwinner, that you should lose out on chances to see your baby!

Child support is very necessary when only one parent is working!

For parents, usually moms, who’re staying home with their babies, even after divorce money is usually tight. Diapers, wipes, formula, bottles, and clothing to fit your baby’s ever-growing body are only the tip of the iceberg. Don’t forget about car seats, strollers, blankets, co-pays for doctor’s visits, over the counter meds, books and toys are all items your baby needs. And someone has to pay for them. If you’ve shopped for some of these supplies, whether at Target or Costco, you know that infants are expensive.

Babies have a high need level, and stay at home parents aren’t free to work for that money, so they often rely on the working parent to provide it for them. If you’re the working parent, then you should expect to be the one who funds the needs of your newest addition.

Parenting a newborn during divorce presents unique challenges

Divorce at any time in life presents challenges. For parents that can mean a lot of added decision making and planning to accommodate their kid’s needs. However, when it’s a baby you’re planning around, there are lots of things that need to be taken into account. Lucky for you, you don’t have to do this alone. Our family law attorneys have handled hundreds of divorce, custody and parenting time cases. We understand the Oakland County family courts.

At The Kronzek Firm, our highly skilled and experienced family law attorneys have spent decades helping the parents of Oakland County navigate their divorces, and keep their children’s need at the forefront of the entire process. So if you’re considering divorce in Oakland County and you have a newborn and a lot of questions, come in and talk to us, or call us at (248) 479-6200. We’re here 24/7 to help you prepare for your best future. And join us next time for the wrap up on this interesting subject – you won’t regret it!