How Child Support is Determined

How Is Child Support Determined: Let’s Find Out

You’re probably wondering, how is child support determined? The truth is that every state usually has various formulas that they use when they need to determine the amount of child support to be offered. While that is the case, some considerations are usually prevalent in almost all states. To have some predictability and consistency in the amount of child support a parent should contribute, the federal government has outlined some child support guidelines that should be used in different states. Here are some aspects that determine the amount of child support for a particular parent.

The Income

When determining the amount of child support, many courts and guidelines provide that the income of both parents be considered. The percentage of the spouse’s total income that every parent contributes goes a long way in determining the amount both parents will be obliged to pay for child support. Some states will base their calculations on the net income while others will go by the the gross income.


If one spouse is already paying alimony or child support from a previous marriage, they will be permitted to deduct that specific amount from their income. Usually, there are some two main requirements to qualify for this kind of deduction; the support payments should not be voluntary but rather court-ordered, and the parents must be responsible for making the payments. A parent isn’t permitted to make any deductions from their income for the support of children or a subsequent spouse.

Shared Custody and Visitation

Most of the guidelines for determining child support will often try to take into account the amount of time the children spend with every parent to determine the amount of child support to be paid. The longer the time a kid spends with their non-custodial guardian, the more the expenses the parent will incur to raise the kid. In instances where the court permitted extensive visitation or shared custody, the amount paid for child support will most likely be less than what would have been paid when there were a little visitation and sole custody.

Can Custody Arrangements Impact the Child Support Obligations?

In most cases, child support duties mainly depend on whether there is a party with sole custody or if the couple has been awarded some joint custody.  When there is one party with sole custody of the child, the other spouse will naturally pay for child support. In case of joint custody, support obligations are often based on the amount each earns and the amount of time the kid spends with every spouse.

How Is Child Support Determined?

While child support is often formulated at the state level, there are still some federal guidelines that exist within Child Support Enforcement Act. Although every state has its own child support calculation formula, there are criteria that most states evaluate:

• The child’s financial needs, such as day care, education, special needs or insurance

• The needs and income of the parent who has been granted custody

• A child’s standard of living before divorce or separation

For proper calculation of child support, parents are obliged to comprehensively outline their financial situation in court, including their monthly income and expenses lawyers for ecommerce businesses can provide the right info on the matter.