What is Child Support?
Child support is money paid to the parent whom the child resides with the majority of the time. New York State Child Support Standards Act governs and provides the child support calculation based upon the parents’ incomes, and the needs of the child(ren).
The purpose of basic child support is to assist in the general expenses of the child(ren), including a roof over their head, food on the table, and working utilities in the home. Child support pro-rata add-ons are a separate expense to assist in the child(ren)’s health care cost, childcare needs, and similar expenses.
How Does Child Support Work?
If the child(ren) reside with you for more than 51% of the time, then that parent is entitled to receive child support. Each parent is required to disclose proof of their income. And each parent’s gross income will be plugged into the statutory child support calculation to yield the payment of support (i.e. monthly, bi-weekly, weekly, etc.).
The child support calculation comes with a presumption to be the correct amount of child support; however, there are exceptions and factors that will provide deviations (both higher or lower) in monthly child support payments.
New York State Child Support
New York state child support provides a calculation with a required minimum calculation of child support and then a framework for the factors to consider for all “discretionary” income above the cap.
How Is Child Support Determined?
The basic application of child support takes the combined parental income multiplied by the percentage of applicable children. For example, one child is 17%, two 25%, three 29%, four 31%, five+ 35%.
Is Child Support Mandatory in Divorce?
Two parents can agree to waive a basic right of child support (however, a $25.00 per month is a requirement that cannot be waived), so long as there is a detailed explanation outlining the other ways that the parents plan to address caring for the child(ren)’s needs.
A court will rarely object to two parents’ contractual agreement with regards to child support obligations, so long as it complies with statutory requirements and reasons explaining the deviation from the mandatory amounts of child support.