South Elgin Family Law Attorney
Law Offices of Anthony R. Scifo – FREE Consultation – 847-628-8311 – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
Illinois in 2018 made changes to calculating child support payments. The state applies an “income shares” model in which the courts set the amount of support the parents must provide. It considers economic figures that entail the total income of both parents, cost of living and number of children.
First, the court calculates the child support sum the parents shall pay. Next, the court decides each parents’ share of that sum depending on their incomes. Typically, the larger the difference in income between the parents, the more support the parent with the greater income pays. If you’d like more help on how the state determines child support, talk with a lawyer today at 847-628-8311.
Child Support and Shared Parenting – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
If both parents are responsible for the child for a minimum of 146 overnights each year, state law calls it a “shared parenting” situation. Courts determine child support differently than in non-shared parenting situations. With shared-parenting, the amount of support the parents are responsible for increases by a factor of 50 percent. The amount of time that each parent shall spend with the child is a factor in calculating each parent’s responsibility. In shared-parenting cases, the greater amount of time the obligor spends with the child, he or she owes less support.
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The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services features many tools on its site that help you estimate child support figures. For example, a look at how the incomes shares method works and child support calculation. There’s also a table for converting income from gross to net and a worksheet to total your support amount.
State courts follow child support figures set by the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. However, in some cases the court may find that deviating from the state’s guidelines are in the child’s best interests. (Talk with a South Elgin Family Law Attorney to learn more.) In determining whether to follow or to deviate from the guidelines, the court takes into account factors like:
-The resources and requirements of the child.
-The resources and requirements of both parents.
-The child’s educational, emotional and physical needs.
-The child’s standard of living the child in the event the parents did not part.
Modifying Child Support in Illinois – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
Modifications to the state’s ordered child support are possible only if the parent seeking the change can show:
-A significant change in circumstances since the initial entry of the child support order.
-The child’s healthcare needs require a modification in support payments.
-The child support order differs from state guidelines by greater than 20 percent. This standard for child support obligations is available only in certain specific circumstances. Ask your South Elgin Family Law Attorney for more information.
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Passage of a 2017 law altering child support calculation doesn’t provide a basis to modify a child support payment according to the earlier guidelines. If one of the reasons for modifying the support can be shown, however, the court can apply the present law to calculate the obligation from that point even if the initial order applies the earlier law. Note that the court doesn’t grant modifications to child support that’s past due.
Determining Child Support When a Parent is Unemployed – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
When calculating each parent’s income for the reasons of setting child support responsibilities, courts in the state of Illinois will take into account potential income amounts if a parent is unemployed – or underemployed – voluntarily. In these situations, the other parent will provide evidence of the unemployed parent’s potential income if he or she sought full-time employment.
Calculating Child Support When One Party Has Income That Includes Commissions or Overtime – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
As we mention above, the support amounts that a parent has to pay typically depends on the relative income levels of both parents. But in some situations one of the parents may have income that changes every month due to commissions or overtime. In these cases, there are methods that the courts apply to determine that parent’s income for purposes of support payments:
-The court may calculate an average income.
-Alternatively, the court might choose to set a base amount of child support that the obligor must supplement each month. This typically depends upon on the extra earnings.
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How Maintenance Payments Relate to Child Support in Illinois – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
To gain an understanding of how one party’s payment or receipt of alimony affects child support responsibilities, it is helpful to recall that the amounts of child support the state mandates depends upon the incomes of the parents relative to each other. With that in mind, maintenance can impact child support in the following ways:
-If you’re the recipient of alimony (spousal maintenance), that serves to raise your income for child support responsibilities. This applies whether the alimony comes from a parent who pays support or from a different former spouse. It means that if you’re also receiving child support, the spousal maintenance you receive usually tends to lower how much child support you’ll receive.
-If you’re the party who is making alimony payments, the main issue is whether those payments are going to the same party who is receiving payments for child support. Alimony payments provided to the same party as your payments for child support will lower your income for purposes of those child support obligations. Alimony payments provided to a third party, however, will not decrease your income and have no impact on child support obligations.
Calculating Child Support When the Father Has Support Obligations to More Than One Family
When a child support payment obligor has responsibilities to more than one family, the rule generally is that any support orders from prior situations will lessen the obligor’s income for purposes of determining subsequent child support. This basically means the chronological order in which the support orders were made is relevant.
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Determining Child Support Obligations for College Costs – South Elgin Family Law Attorney
The general guideline is that child support obligations are required until the child’s 18th birthday or until the child graduates from high school. The courts have some discretion, however, to grant child support after those milestones. One commonly cited reason is to provide support for college costs.
The party who is requesting child support for children over 18 has the burden to show that child support is needed. If the court determines the support amount is appropriate, the amount that both parents must provide is calculated based upon their relative incomes.
Consult with a South Elgin Family Law Attorney at our offices to learn more about how we can help protect your best interests if you are considering divorce at 847-628-8311.