Child Support

The issue of child custody after divorce is decided by the courts. If the spouses can’t come to a mutual agreement and decide against joint legal physical custody, one spouse will take the role of the custodial parent. The custodial parent usually is the one housing the child and making most legal decisions. For this reason, it is generally the non-custodial parent that is ordered to pay for the legal child support of the common child.

How is child support calculated?

The process of how to calculate child support is based on the obligor’s (the one paying the child support) monthly net income. The latter is obtained by deducting Social Security, sate and federal income taxes, pension contributions, union dues, health insurance coverage (dependent) or pressing medical expenses from the monthly gross income. That child support calculation will be judged against the child support statutes, which contain and indication of a child support percentage that should be from the obligor’s net income. Then the court will discuss whether that percentage is reasonable within that specific situation. If so, they may part with the statutory child support guidelines and determine are adequate amount.


Factors that may influence a parting from statutory guidelines include:

  • Earnings
  • Resources
  • Debts
  • Child specific needs
  • Living standards before the dissolution
  • Income tax exemption
  • Public assistance

Are you currently going through a divorce and need information regarding child support? If so, contact one of our child support attorneys in your area today!

How to show income

In order to make an educated decision about the amount of child support that is to be paid, the court often requires documented pieces, such as pay statements, tax returns, etc in order to verify and certify income. All too often, especially in unfriendly divorce cases, one party suspects that the other one is hiding income. While “off the books” income is difficult to prove, this is the time were experienced child support lawyers can help you.


In general, every payment or income per se, must be declared, including:

  • Wages, unemployment, disability benefits
  • Employer benefits
  • Non-taxable benefits (military allowances, COLA, specialty pay)

However, income from public benefit programs or one-time payments must not necessarily be documented. Child support decisions, along with questions of custody are just two of the most difficult aspects of a divorce. While the emotional roller coaster can be the most draining experiences for both spouses, they still very much have the child’s well being in mind. The ideal resolution to these divorce issues is an agreement in which the best interest of the child is served while rendering the adult parties accepting a fair agreement.

This article is provided for informational purposes only. If you need legal advice or representation,
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