Child Support

2 girls in pool child support


Negotiating child support with your spouse can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to tear apart your family. New York State has child support guidelines based on percentage of the parents’ total income that many families follow, but the law also allows parents to work out reasonable support arrangements based on their own needs and the best interests of the children. An expert Westchester child support attorney at Kelly & Knaplund can guide your family to a fair and reasonable support arrangement.

New York State child support laws

In New York State, child support under the child support guidelines consists of:

  • basic child support (calculated by a percentage of the parents’ income)
  • health insurance for the child or children
  • medical and dental costs not reimbursed by insurance
  • child care that is necessary for parents to work

In most cases, the parent with whom the children spend less time (noncustodial) pays basic child support to the parent with whom the children spend more time (custodial). 

Parents generally divide the other three components of support as it works best for their family, or pro rata, as the guidelines suggest.
Pro rata means the amount is divided by the parents according to how much of their total combined income each parent earns. For example, if Mom earns $80,000 per year of guidelines income and Dad earns $60,000 per year of guidelines income, Mom pays 57% and Dad pays 43% of health insurance, other medical and dental costs, and child care. “Guidelines income” for W-2 wage earners consists of gross income, less FICA and Medicare deductions, and less New York City and Yonkers income tax, if applicable. For wage earners who are 1099 earners or who are self-employed, there are other provisions to determine guidelines income.

Westchester child support attorney

If parents cannot agree on child support, a judge or support magistrate will use the guidelines to dictate who pays how much,
so it benefits you to have a child support attorney who will focus on your family’s own needs and the best interests of your children. At Kelly & Knaplund, a skilled Westchester child support attorney will help you and your spouse work out a fair solution.

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