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How Is Child Support Calculated When a Parent Has Multiple Obligations?

Posted on in Divorce

DuPage County child support attorneyIn July of 2017, Illinois enacted major changes to the way child support is calculated. Previous to this change, child support obligations were calculated by applying a percentage based on the number of children requiring support to the obligor parent’s income. For example, if you had one child, you would pay 20 percent of your net income in child support, and if you had two children, you would pay 28 percent of your income. Some parents are still subject to child support orders created under the old law, but any new child support arrangements will be calculated using the “Income Shares” method. Illinois child support orders now take both parents’ net incomes and amount of parenting time into consideration. If you are a parent who has children with more than one person, you may wonder how the court will determine a child support arrangement that is achievable with regard to your financial resources while still providing for all of your children’s needs.

Income Shares Child Support Guidelines

The Income Shares model for child support calculation involves the following steps:

  • Both parents’ net income is added together to determine their combined net income. This combined amount represents the financial resources that would be available to the child if the parents were married.

  • Each parent’s income is divided by the combined net income in order to determine what percentage of the combined net income each parent earns.

  • The combined net income and an “income shares chart” are used to determine the basic child support obligation that both parents are responsible for.

  • The basic child support obligation is then split between the parents based on their respective contributions to the combined net income.

Previous Child Support Obligations Are Deducted From Net Income

Net income is calculated by taking a parent’s gross income and deducting expenses, such as income tax and health insurance premiums. Most importantly, previous child support obligations and spousal maintenance obligations are deducted from the parent’s gross income in order to arrive at the net income amount. For example, say a father’s gross income is $80,000 a year. He gets divorced, and the Income Shares guidelines require him to pay $16,000 to his ex-wife in child support. Years later, he has a child with another woman and must pay child support for this child as well. For the purposes of calculating a child support amount for the new child, his net income will be $64,000. The goal of this child support calculation method is to ensure that an obligor parent is not overwhelmed with unreasonably high child support obligations.

Contact a Wheaton Child Support Lawyer

For sound legal guidance regarding child support issues, contact The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. Schedule a consultation with a skilled DuPage County family law attorney by calling our office today at 630-462-9500.





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