Every state has child support guidelines. There are two common types: “income share” and “percentage of income.”
Income share states (like Kansas and Missouri) determine child support using a number of factors, but the primary factors are the number of children in the family and the total income of the parents. The child support amount is determined from standard tables (which vary from state to state), and then divided between the parents in proportion to their incomes. Generally, if Mom is the custodial parent and has 42 percent of the income, she will bear 42 percent of the child support amount by paying 100 percent of the cost of providing a home for the children, paying for their education, activities, food, clothing, etc.; Dad will meet his child support obligation by reimbursing Mom for 58 percent of the child support amount to help her meet the expenses of the children.
States that use a percentage of income to set child support (such as Texas and Nebraska) set the support at a percentage of the non-residential parents’ income. For example, if Mom is the custodial parent, she might receive 20 percent of Dad’s income for 1 child, 25 percent for two children, 30 percent for three children, 35 percent for four, and so forth, up to a maximum of (usually) six children.
While it sounds simple, there are numerous factors that go into deciding child support payments, from the unique needs of the children to the ability of a parent to pay. Fortunately, the Bradley Child Support Tools software makes calculating child support easy and lets you adjust your calculations as circumstances change.
[Note: The statements and information in this blog are necessarily general in nature and are not intended as legal advice. Relying on the information in this blog is not intended to create an attorney/client relationship. You should consult a qualified attorney for specific guidance based on your specific circumstances.]