If you or your ex-partner have children, you are expected to continue to pay their cost after separation. It often means that one parent will pay to another. You can have a mutual agreement or you can ask Child maintenance service to calculate the amount to be paid for child support.
Why is there a difference in child support payments? Why is a person paying $1000 a month and another is $300? Do you have to pay child support if your spouse doesn’t even need it? How much is child support do you have to pay? There may be considerable and a lot of questions that appear when people get divorced or separated and ask about child support from their lawyers.
Laws about child support say that we need to stick to guidelines and look for the situations where we can determine how much is child support so we can pay for those reasons. But before you know the guidelines legislated by your state, it’s important to know that child support is to support your own child. It is necessary to make sure that your child is having shelter, good food, education, and healthcare. Therefore, if you are awarded to provide support to your child and from that, your child is fed, clothed, and is under shelter, then the purposes are being met.
What do you need to know about Child Support?
In 1989, the New York Child Support Standards Act (“CSSA”) was enacted in order to add consistency to the child support rules and laws. The CSSA itself has set forth the calculations for determining child support for the families DRL § 236-B(7); DRL § 240; FCA § 413.
Although, there are many other elements in a child support verdict that can make it intricate easily.
1. Basic Child Support – Based on the Parties’ Monthly Income
The purpose behind awarding child support as discussed above is to provide shelter, food, and to fulfill the basic needs of a child. To pay the basic child support is the responsibility of the primary custodial parent to the child’s non-custodial parent. Historically, the primary custodial parent is the one with whom a child spends most of his nights. Primarily, the number of nights spent with each parent would determine the custodial parent of a child.
The quantity of basic child support depends on the monthly income of both parents. The child support statutes have set a mathematical formula in order to analyze the presumed and accurate amount for your child support. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the court can divide the presumed amount of basic child support on both parties.
2. How to Calculate the Basic Child Support Amount?
The guidelines to determine the basic child support are detailed extensively below; although the basic child support can be estimated from the formula given underneath:
Gross income of a party based on the last income tax return X
0.9235 if the gross income is derived from employment /
0.847 if the gross income is derived for self-employment /
1.0 if Medicare taxes or social security is unpaid on the gross income X
Applicable child support percentage, which can be determined as:
0.17 for 1 child, 0.25 for 2, 0.29 for 3, 0.31 for 4, 0.35 for 5 or more
However, you don’t need to put your income tax or income details in the formula to find out, you can easily use online calculators from reputable law firms to figure out the basic child support amount.
How much is the Percentage of Child Support?
The percentage of child support can vary according to parental income. In flat percentages of child support, the income percentage remains constant no matter if a non-custodial parent suffers income fluctuations. In varying states, the income percentage varies when the income of a non-custodial parent fluctuates.
To comprehend it more precisely, suppose that a non-custodial parent earns a net monthly income of $2,500 and has 1 child to support. Here, the court will consider only the net income of the non-custodial parent, and a flat percentage for child support will be 25% of the for 1 child. This means he/she will pay $625 as child support for a month.
Child Support Amount according to States
Surprisingly, the child support allotted by the states does not correlate with the living standards of many states. If we look at the data, we find that the most expensive places to live in the United States are Hawaii, California, New York, Maryland, and New Jersey. Massachusetts, which is renowned for being the highest paying child support state, places seventh in the list of the highest cost of living standards. Virginia is comparably 12th in the list and yet comes least to award the child support. However, there are states like Ohio where you can actually rely on the statutes.
How much is Child Support in Ohio?
Ohio Child Support program uses different resources to determine the net income of the non-custodial parent so the child support can be best awarded.
The statutes of Ohio follow a comprehensive child support calculator in which you have to enter the appropriate information. Once the form is completed click calculate to find the estimated child support a non-custodial parent has to provide to the custodial parent living in Ohio.
Factors affecting Child Support
To estimate child support for a child, many states consider the following factors apart from net monthly income:
- If the amount in terms of alimony or basic child support a parent is receiving from the previous marriage.
- Whether the parent is paying the child support for a previous marriage as well.
- Whether the parent is solely responsible for the upbringing of the children from a present or previous marriage
- If the parent is paying for the medical expenses such as Medicaid, health insurance or bears healthcare arrangements costs.
- Whether the parent has to pay for his worker’s union at work or the paycheck has other deductibles.
- Number and ages of the children
- Whether there’s a fluctuation in the monthly income, like if a parent receives payment irregularly in the form of incentives, bonuses, or in lump-sum.
- Whether a parent has remarried and he shares the household expenses with the other partner.
What remains at the Court’s Discretion?
The court may intervene in the state’s statutes for child support and holds the power to take diverge decisions on the basis of factors including:
- The standard of living and educating of a child before the parents divorced
- The basic needs of the child
- The income of the non-custodial parent which identifies the accurate amount for child support
- The number of hours a child spends with non-custodial paying parent &
- If the child received property or resources in terms of inheritance or trust.
Child support amounts can vary across states depending on your financial situation. However, any parent can apply to receive child support payments in a lump sum instead of regular payments. For this, child support receiving parent has to apply at the Family court to receive a particular order.