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Child Support Worksheet Questions

A child support worksheet is a legal document and can be cumbersome leading to many legal questions that seem confusing at times. Moreover, each state has its own laws and guidelines worksheet on how child support is calculated. Family Lawyers on JustAnswer are available to try and help in questions pertaining to child support worksheet calculations and the filling up of forms. Below are the top questions about child support worksheet, answered by Experts on JustAnswer.

How is child support determined? What are the existing guidelines that can tell how a parent will have to pay?

All states have an established formula or court rules that determine the amount of child support to be paid. There are called state child support guidelines and worksheets which take into consideration the needs of the child, the ability of the non-custodial parent to support the child, the standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the parents not divorced, and provisions for any additional children the non-custodial parent may have.

If the child spends more time with one parent, does the other parent still need to pay child support even though he or she may not make enough money?

One major factor in child support depends on who is declared the custodial parent by the court. Child support amount is not determined by who the child spends the most time with. Before support is paid, the court or the custody agreement has to specify which parent is the custodial parent and that is the parent who receives the support payments. The child support worksheet takes into account the percentage of time spent with each parent and the earnings of each parent to determine the share of each parent's responsibility for the total monthly support, but the non-custodial parent pays the custodial parent their share of the support.

Can child support be modified for a reduction of support?

There needs to be a substantial change of circumstances to justify a reduction in support to the child, such as a reduced income or an additional dependent, for example. The relevant court may be petitioned for reduction of support. It may be a challenging task to explain why it would be in the best interest of the child to receive reduced support.

If either of the divorced spouses remarry, will the income of the new partner have any bearing on the quantum of child support? Will each of the spouses be held responsible for the other’s child from a previous marriage?

The remarriage and the salary of the new spouse are usually not taken into consideration in the case of child support. The court only looks at the income the legal parents of the child. Each spouse is normally responsible and liable to pay child support for only his or her child from any previous marriage. The new spouse cannot be asked to pay child support for a child which is not his or hers.

Which year’s income is to be taken into account in recalculating child support if either of the parents lose their job?

The court usually anticipates that periods of unemployment are typically temporary. The court will therefore require that the income from the previous year be taken in calculation of child support. However, in the event of either of the parents being laid-off due to extraordinary factors, the court can be approached for a review of child support amount due to the drastic change in circumstances.

The Child Support Worksheet seems to be unfair as it seems to favor the parent with more income. How can a parent who does not have custody over the child fight this?

The state child support guidelines and worksheet typically create a refutable but reasonably fair presumption of the correct amount of support that should be paid by the non-custodial parent. However, if there are some extraordinary expenses and reasons that are not taken into account by the worksheet, then one can request that the court deviate from the presumed amount of support. This is normally within the court's discretion to do so. If you need further details on your specific case, you can write to Family Lawyers on JustAnswer with the details of your case.

Is it obligatory under law to file a Child Support Worksheet even if both parties have agreed on a child support amount during the original divorce?

A full disclosure of income is in the child support worksheet is obligatory so that the presumed correct amount of support is known to both the parents as well as the court even if the agreed upon amount exceeds the minimum support amount.

Is it possible that a custodial parent ends up paying the non-custodial parent child support even though the latter may make more money? Child support takes into consideration many factors which include percentage of custody, and employment of both custodial parents. In rare cases it is possible that the custodial parent ends up paying a little extra to the other party. One way to avoid that is to consider modifying custody so that the non-custodial parent has slightly less official time with the child, which will then reduce the custodial parent's obligation. Family Lawyers on JustAnswer can help with suggestions in this regard after reviewing the particulars of your case.

Family Lawyers specializing in child support worksheet problems frequently answer questions on the subject on JustAnswer. Many of them have answered these and other questions related to child care support worksheets and guidelines. When confused about certain questions in the worksheet you can ask a Family Lawyer instead of being ill-informed. What’s more, getting an answer from Experts on JustAnswer is both fast and affordable.

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