Child Support

In Israel, at least in the case of Jewish families, the financial obligation of bringing up children is borne by the father. And after divorce each spouse is required to support his or her self without assistance from the ex-spouse.

This is why child support payments in Israel may be such a high percentage of the (usually) ex-husband’s salary and it is also the reason that there is no concept of alimony – just child support.

If parents get divorced using a divorce agreement (which is what we recommend) then the amount of child support is worked out between them either on their own or working with a mediator. If they get divorced through litigation it will be decided upon by the court based on evidence brought during the hearing of the case.

Please contact us with any questions you have about child support  or to arrange a complimentary case evaluation. 

Many, many people have been on forced, unpaid vacation or let go from their jobs entirely, during the pandemic. For those paying or receiving child support, this has been exceptionally difficult.

The divorce agreement or ruling, determines the amount of the support payments. You and your ex can always renegotiate for reduced payments now and regular payments after this period is over. But if that’s not possible, you can go before the judge and try to prove an ‘official’ change in circumstance for the obligated amount to change.

To date, the pandemic has not been considered an official change of circumstance but each judge will rule according to his/her analysis of the situation.

If you have stopped receiving support payments you may apply to the bailiff's court to collect in the meantime. See video explanation here.

If you’ve gotten divorced via an agreement (which we always recommend as the first choice) the payment amounts and schedule are determined by that agreement. And generally, that can’t be changed. If the child support payments were determined according to a court ruling in either the Family Court or the Rabbinic court, the general rule is the payments continue until the child is 18 and then at 1/3 of the original amount, until the child reaches 20 (for a son) and 21 (for a daughter).

See video explanation here.

Child support is the right of the child. It’s frowned upon to pay the full amount up front because it’s difficult to calculate the amount of financial support a child will need from birth until 18. And if the amount awarded runs out early, the child may even be able to sue the parent for additional funds.

If it’s worded and structured properly it may be possible. While the secular court doesn’t give a judgement for such an arrangement, it may be agreed upon in a written divorce agreement signed by the divorcing couple. And the Rabbinic court is more likely to grant this as well. See video explanation here.

When the mother of children who are receiving child support from the ex-husband remarries, this does not affect the payments that he is obligated to make to support his children.

In Israel, at least in the case of Jewish families, the financial obligation of bringing up children is borne by the father regardless of the ex-wife's marital status.

See video explanation here. 

When a divorced parent who pays child support loses their job, they are still obligated to continue the payments whether they were originally determined by an agreement affirmed by the court as a judgement, or by an actual judicial decision.

That being the case, there may be circumstances whereby one could appeal the judgement in court.

For example, if the person is a surgeon who has come down with a disease that prevents him or her from doing surgery or of they have lost their license to practice medicine, the courts may consider a change in the support payments. Another valid consideration is for one who has been chronically unemployed for a few years.

If you find yourself in this situation it's imperative that you consult with an experienced attorney before you try and resolve it.

See video explanation here.

It often happens that a couple makes Aliyah, gets divorced and one of them goes back to their country of origin.

If your spouse has left Israel and has stopped making child support payments, you can take action.

You must open a file in the Bailiff's court first. If your spouse has gone to any country besides the United States, call us and we will try and help you. If they've gone to the U.S., the next thing you do is submit a file to the department of Justice here in Israel and they will work together with the U.S. government to try and force your ex to pay child support, all at no cost to you.  

See video explanation here.

Whether the child support has been signed into your divorce agreement or ruled on by the courts, if your ex-husband is not making the payments there are  couple of things you can do.

Open a file in The Bailiff's Court. Your ex  will then be served and has to answer right away as to why he hasn't been making payments. The court, in order to get him to pay, can put a lean on his wages and/or get his driver's license cancelled and if all else fails, put him in jail.

You can go to Betuach Leumi (social security) and depending on the amount of money you make, they will give you child support payments and go after your ex to cover them.

The father of your children is obligated to support them until they are 18 years old so don't hesitate to 'help him' fulfill that obligation.

See video explanation here.

Until 2017, the law in Israel regarding child support for Jewish parents was decided in accordance with Jewish talmudic law. Up until that time the sole responsibility for the financial upbringing of the children was the obligation of the father, at least until the children turned 16.

This changed with a judgement given by the Supreme Court of Israel that summer. In the new ruling, the High Court decided that in cases of joint custody the court would figure out the amount of the "costs" associated with supporting the couple's children and then would obligate the parents to pay those costs on a prorated basis with what they each earned.
The calculation has become complex and convoluted – making it unclear to both legal practitioners and Family Court judges.

In any case, after this Supreme Court ruling, some of the family and district courts including the District Court in Jerusalem, apportion the calculation of child support relative to the incomes of the parents and the amount of time that the children are with each parent - even in cases where there is not joint custody.

In the past, attorneys were able to tell people with up to seventy or eighty percent surety what their child support payment would look like. Today we can't say for sure what the amount is going to be but we are committed to help you work out the best rate possible for you and your family.

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