Child Support

“Everyone has to pay their child support, and no matter if you’re a Hollywood actor or anyone else, it’s always a little bit more than you want to pay.”

—Ethan Hawke

Truth of the matter is, child support is often more than the non-custodial parent believe he or she can afford to pay. The Firm works with custodial and non-custodial parents to arrive at a child support payment plan that does not strangle the paying parent and does not leaving the receiving parent stranded.

Each parent has a duty to financially support their child. New York State has devised a formula in which each parent must contribute a percentage of their income to financially support their child. The actual percentage depends on the number of children – 17% for one child, 25% for two children, 29% for three children, 31% for four children and at least 35% for five or more children. This is the basic child support obligation.

Even though each parent has a duty to financially support their child, the non-custodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent. The custodial parent is that parent that has the child more than 50% of the time, has the child less then 50% of the time and is designated the primary physical parent by agreement or has the child 50% of the time and is the less-monied parent.

In addition to basic child support, the non-custodial parent also pays their share of the add-on expenses of childcare, unreimbursed medical expenses and educational expenses. The add-on share is calculated by dividing the non-custodial parents income by the total income of both parents (non-custodial parent income/(custodial parent income + non-custodial parent income) and then multiplying that percentage against the additional add-on expense such as a doctor’s bill or the cost of a babysitter.

Even though the parties may agree to child support outside of court, to make child support legally enforceable, court intervention is necessary. To avoid multiple court dates, the parents should agree to  child support before going to court and ask the court to so-order their agreement. If this is not possible, the custodial parent must file a Petition for Child Support.

Support Enforcement

You now have a child support order or divorce judgment for child support and the non-custodial parent won’t pay. What are your options? Work with a lawyer, the family court or child support services to apply such measures as income execution, unemployment insurance benefits interception, income tax refund interception at the state and federal levels, credit bureau submission, lottery intercept, property execution, driver’s license suspension, passport denial, liens and tax referrals.