Susan Rossi Cook, Attorney and Mediator

How to expect child support to be calculated

Child support is usually a significant concern for parents and families and is important for children in their daily lives. Child support depends on various factors used to calculate child support in different states and other factors such as which parent has custody of the child so it is helpful for parents to be familiar with the child support laws in their state.

Child custody impacts child support because if one parent has sole custody of the child, the non-custodial parent will likely pay a higher child support amount. Additionally, if the parents share joint custody, the child support obligations will likely be based on the percentage of time the child spends with each parent. Child support is usually based on child support guidelines and different factors in each state, though some factors are the same.

Factors that may be considered include the financial needs of the child such as education, child care, insurance or any special needs; the income and needs of the parent with custody of the child; the income and ability to pay for the paying parent; and the child's standard of living before the separation or divorce, though courts usually acknowledge that it may be difficult to maintain the same standard of living following the separation or divorce.

Any issues involving children during the divorce process can be both emotional and challenging. Understanding, in advance, how issues such as child support are resolved can help divorcing parents better understand what to expect and navigate the process with the fewest number of challenges possible.

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Susan Rossi Cook, Attorney and Mediator

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Needham, MA 02494

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