Determining the Amount of Child Support
During a divorce, the court has to determine the amount of child support to be paid by the noncustodial parent. Like any other state, New York has some very specific rules that need to be considered before the total amount can be determined. If you anticipate getting child support from your former spouse, or you think you will need to pay it, you should consider all the aspects the judge will be looking at when deciding the amount.
Income and Financial Needs of the Parents
One of the most important aspects of deciding child support is the amount of income of both parents. The income of each parent will be considered, but so will the amount of bills each one currently has. Even if the income and financial obligations of both parents are about equal, the custodial parent will be awarded money from the noncustodial parent since it costs a lot to raise a child. In many cases, though, one parent usually makes more than the other, and that will be taken into consideration. For example, if the noncustodial parent makes more money than the parent who has custody of the child, he or she will typically need to pay more than if the two had equal income.
Keep in mind that the child’s standard of living will need to be similar to what it was before the divorce. This means the child’s standard of living prior to and after the divorce will be considered when determining the amount of child support owed, as this protects children from being negatively affected due to a sudden lack of money in the household. Related costs may include school, childcare, and extracurricular activities.
The child’s health needs are also taken into consideration. For example, if the child has physical or emotional conditions that need to be paid for, the noncustodial parent will be expected to share those costs with the parent who has custody. In addition, someone will need to pay for health insurance. If you get a lawyer, you and your former spouse can usually work out who pays the insurance depending on which plan is the most comprehensive. If you do not hire a lawyer to help, a judge may make this decision on his or her own.
The court recognizes that a child needs more than just financial support to thrive. Therefore, a judge usually considers forms of assistance given to the child that are not monetary. For example, if the non-custodial parent chooses to be as involved as possible in the child’s life, this may affect the amount of child support due.
This is not an exhaustive list of the factors that go into child support decisions. If you want to ensure you get the most money possible to raise your child, you need to hire an experienced New York divorce attorney who has helped several clients get what they need for their family. Contact the Law Offices of Brian D. Perskin today to get started.