Understanding Child Support
If you are going through a divorce, you may be worried about child support. Hiring an attorney can help you figure out the best arrangement for you and your family.
Determining Your Payment Amount
When someone comes into our Rochester office, they often want to know how much their child support responsibility is going to be. New York State has a law called the Child Support Standards Act, which governs the amount to be paid. It states that if you have 1 child, you pay 17% of your gross income, less FICA. If you have 2 children it’s 25%. If you have 3 children its 29%. If you have 4 children its 31%. If you have 5 children its 35%. It’s simply a matter of looking up the amount in the Standards Act. The chart is readily available online, the amount can be easily determined.
Length of Payments
Many people come into our office wanting information about their obligation with regard to child support. They frequently ask how long they will have to pay. The general rule is that child support is paid until the child reaches 21 years of age or is emancipated in some other way. For example, if your child is in the military, gets married, or is emancipated by virtue of the fact that they have their own full-time job, your obligation would end before they reach age 21. Absent those circumstances – if your child is working part time or going to college – your obligation to pay child support will continue until that child reaches the age of 21.
Is Child Support Tax Deductible?
If people come into our Rochester office, wanting to know whether they can deduct child support payments on their tax return, the simple answer is no, you cannot. It is not a deductible expense. It’s not something you should try to claim.
Filing for Child Support When Your Spouse Lives in Another State
A lot of people who come into the office say their boyfriend, girlfriend, or former spouse has moved to another state – and they’re not receiving child support. They have never gotten child support, and they want to receive it. In such cases, the parent who desires to receive payments would have to file an application or petition in family court in the county where the child lives. If you live in Monroe County, here in Rochester, or any of the surrounding communities, the application is filed in family court. Once that application is filed, the other party will be served with that petition and the application will be heard in the Monroe County court where the judge will enter an order setting forth your ability to get payments.
If you want dependable representation to safeguard you through the legal process of divorce, contact our Rochester divorce attorneys today.