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How is child support determined?

On Behalf of | Jul 9, 2021 | Divorce |

When you and your spouse separated, you knew that you could end up having to pay child support. Since you work more often and earn greater wages, it makes sense for you to keep your job and to focus on providing a good life and income for your child. You will still see them regularly thanks to your custody plan, but because of your work, it will be less than half-time.

In your situation, it’s likely that you will pay support. Child support is determined by looking at several factors, so you do need to know what the judge is going to be looking at or what the guidelines are if you’re negotiating your own support payments.

What factors play a role in child support?

The primary factor in child support payments is how much income the parents bring in. Minnesota’s laws assume that both parents will work and bring in an income to support their child. If your ex doesn’t work or is employed part-time, then the court will instead think about the parent’s potential income when considering the support owed.

There is a chart with basic guidelines available on the Minnesota Office of the Revisor of Statutes page. Based on this chart, if the combined parental income is $2,000 to $2,099 per month and the parents share one child, the support amount should be $516 per month. If the parents have a combined income of $6,000 and have two children, then the support amount would be $1,404.

Of course, there are other factors that have to play a role in support payments, such as the other responsibilities the parents have to take care of, like bills and housing, as well as any other children from previous marriages. It’s not reasonable to ask a parent to pay more than they can afford, so sometimes there are exceptions. However, the guidelines are there to provide people with a good idea about how much they may have to pay, so that they can begin to budget accordingly.

Take a look at that chart and remember to ask questions if you’re not sure how much you could have to pay.