Common Mistakes in Calculating Child Support

Family Law Articles

While the guideline child support is relatively easy to calculate there are a number of mistakes that people make in calculating child support. These mistakes usually involve determining the“ net resources”.

  • Looking only at the person’s tax return or paystubs only in determining the net resources for child support. There may be other resources that need to be added to the reported income before the percentage is applied.
  • Self-employed people often underreport the true net resources. There may be“ benefits” received from the employment that need to be included in the net resources before the percentage is applied.
  • Unemployment and underemployment situations require further investigation to determine what the person should be making, considering his or her education and experience and the current market for employment.
  • Failing to investigate the person’s lifestyle to find all the net resources can result in a low number for the net resources.

Failing to ask for Retroactive Child Support is another common mistake. This occurs when someone has not previously been ordered to pay child support. Under certain circumstances a claim for retro active child support can be made. Sometimes courts will even order retroactive child support back to the birth of a child.

Getting an experienced child custody attorney involved early in the case can be critical when calculating child support. Child support can be as much as six figures by the time the child ages out of child support, so proper calculations can make a big difference. Call Robin R. Zegen for a consultation so she can advise you on custody issues using her 30 years of experience.