Divorce is not an easy process to go through, and this can be especially difficult when children are involved. The non-custodial parent may have concerns regarding what they might be ordered to pay for child support. While there are some horror stories out there, understanding how a court determines the amount of child support that has to be paid can help make the process a little easier.
Determining Which Standards to Apply
When a court in the State of Texas orders child support, it is calculated using a specific set of guidelines to establish a minimum amount. This being said, there is a host of factors that the court can consider to deviate from the basic minimum (we will tackle this more later).
The monthly income of the individual expected to pay child support will be used to partially determine what the payments will be. This includes income from the following sources:
- All wages/salaries and other compensation for services. This includes commissions, overtime pay, tips, and bonuses
- All interest, dividends, and royalty incomes
- Self-employment income
- Rental income. However, this is after deducting operating expenses or mortgage payments
- Retirement pay
- Severance pay
- Trust income
- Disability and worker’s compensation benefits
However, it should be noted that these following sources of income will not be used to determine child-support payments:
- Benefits through Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
- Any payments for providing foster care
- Any form of income earned by a new spouse
Depending on how much the individual makes, the individual will fall into one of the two standards:
- Individuals who make less than $7,500 of net monthly income will fall under the first standard
- Individuals who make more than $7,500 of net monthly incomes will fall under the second standard
You can find a generalization of how much you can expect to pay for your standard by using this child support calculator.
Deviations from the General Guidelines
Every individual case is different. This is why courts make sure they know all of the facts before setting the amount of child support a non-custodial parent is required to pay. Here are the deviations that may apply when it best meets the interest of the child involved:
- The amount of time a parent has access to and possession of the child
- The individual needs of the child
- The age of the child
- The ability of each parent to contribute to the support of the child
- The availability of financial resources to support the child
- Specialized education needs
- Healthcare expenses
- Any other expenses relating to the care of the child
Medical Child Support
It should be noted that medical child support is awarded in addition to the financial needs of children in the state of Texas. This is done to ensure that the child is receiving the proper medical care coverage they need. The court will take into consideration a number of factors to determine which parent will be responsible for maintaining the health of the child. These factors include the income of the parents and the specific health needs of the child.
The laws pertaining to child custody and support are complex and can be difficult to understand. Alison Grant, Attorney at Law has provided many individuals with compassionate legal services in Lewisville and the surrounding communities since 1998. She is a strong advocate for every client she represents. With open and honest communication, she will be able to help you reach a resolution that ensures the protection of your rights and best helps your child. Contact Alison Grant, Attorney at Law today to schedule your consultation.