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Oregon Child Support
Child Support in Oregon

In Oregon, either or both parents may be ordered to provide child support. In determining child support the courts consider:

  • all earnings, income and resources of each parent, including real and personal property;
  • the earnings history and potential of each parent;
  • the reasonable necessities of each parent;
  • the ability of each parent to borrow;
  • the educational, physical, and emotional needs of the child for whom the support is sought;
  • the amount of assistance which would be paid to the child under the full standard of the states IV-A plan;
  • pre-existing support orders and current dependants;
  • any Social Security or veterans' benefits paid to the child as a result of the parent's disability or retirement.

According to Oregon's guidelines, the child is entitled to benefit from the income of both parents to the same extent that he or she would have if the marriage had not failed. Both parents share in the costs of supporting the child in the same proportion as each parent's income bears to the combined income of both parents. Child support in Oregon must also be determined to insure, as a minimum, that the child being supported benefits from the income and resources of the absent parent on a fair basis in comparison with any other minor children of the absent parent.

The courts use the official Oregon Child Support guidelines to determine the correct amount of child support. They follow these guidelines unless the parents have agreed to a child support amount approved by the court or the court finds these guidelines unjust for a particular case.

The formula used in the guidelines to determine each parent's support obligation is based on the combined income of both parents and then determines each parent's prorated share of the base support amount.

Oregon uses the Income Shares Model to determine the amount of child support the noncustodial parent must pay. The Income Shares Model estimates the amount of support that would have been available if the marriage had not failed. This estimated amount is then divided proportionally to the parents according to each parent's income. This is easy to do using the Oregon child support worksheet. Pay records typically substantiate the estimated incomes.

This routine takes into account both parents' gross income and applies a percentage to it based on the number of minor children they have together. The court takes the combined income of both parents and works out the proportion each contributes. That figure is then divided proportionately based on each parent's ability to pay and which parent has primary custody.

If the noncustodial parent has a higher income than the custodial parent, the noncustodial parent would then be responsible for the greater portion of the child support obligation; conversely, if the noncustodial parent has a lower income than the custodial, the noncustodial parent would then be responsible for the smaller portion of the child support obligation.

In Oregon wages may be garnished to pay child support or payment may be made through the clerk of the court. A child support award must contain provisions for payment of health insurance and any uninsured medical expenses. A parent may be required to maintain life insurance with the child as beneficiary. Child support is described in Oregon Revised Statutes; Volume 2, Sections 25.275, 107.105, 107.106, and 107.820.

Once this amount is determined it is essential to take a look at any appropriate Oregon child support deviation factors that may be applicable to the situation. Additional information about Oregon child support can be found in the Oregon state statutes.

Calculate Oregon Child Support

Other Expenses and Deductions

Extraordinary expenses are either add-ons, where the expense is added to the support payment, or deductions, where the amount is deducted, and indicated as either mandatory or permissive. Childcare expenses are a mandatory deduction, and extraordinary medical expenses are permissive deductions.

The court views extraordinary medical expenses, childcare and secondary education support add-ons.

Child Support Enforcement

Children grow and thrive because the the Oregon Child Support Program makes it easy for parents to give children the support they need.

When a noncustodial parent does not fulfill their obligation to their child or children, the Child Support Program has many tools to enforce child support and medical insurance. These include:

  • collecting federal or state tax refunds, and other types of federal payments to pay past due support;
  • placing a lien against property owned by the parent if that property is in Oregon, which means the property cannot be sold with a clear title until the support has been paid;
  • garnishing sources of income such as lottery winnings, insurance settlements or inheritance;
  • suspending driver's, occupational or recreational licenses if a parent owes at least $2,500 in back support and fails to make and keep a payment agreement;
  • suspending or restricting a passport if a parent owes at least $2,500 in back support;
  • and turning the names of parents who owe a certain amount of support over to credit reporting agencies.

In extreme cases a court may put a parent under contempt for failure to pay support or to force them to pay in the future. The judge may also impose a jail sentence.

More information about Oregon Child Support Enforcement can be found at their website.

Emancipation

In Oregon, child support normally ends when a child is 18. However, support may be extended until 21 if a child attends school at least half-time and maintains at least a C average. Support may be extended indefinitely if the child is physically or mentally handicapped. Child support can end before 18 when a child marries, enlists in the military or becomes legally emancipated. Specific protocols cover children between 18 and 21.

Deviation Factors

The "Presumed Amount of Support" carries with it a few exceptions that permit modification, which means increases or decreases in income, increases or decreases in special expenses or simply an increase or decrease in support. These alterations are called "rebuttal deviations," and unless they apply, the presumed amount controls.

  • Evidence of other resources of a parent;
  • The parents' reasonable necessities affect the presumptive level of support;
  • The net income after withholdings affects the ability to pay;
  • A relevant ability to borrow;
  • There are other dependants that affect the presumption
  • Special hardships, such as medical or extraordinary visitation travel related costs;
  • The child has extraordinary or diminished needs;
  • The custodial parent should stay home as a homemaker;
  • Tax consequences of child tax credits, earned income credits deductions or spousal support consequences affect the presumption;
  • A financial advantage from a spouse or domestic partner;
  • Financial benefits afforded from employment including self/family employment;
  • A child attending school or not living at home;
  • Prior findings regarding the reason for the existing order;
  • The net income of a party after payment of mutually incurred debts which affects the ability to pay;
  • A tax advantage or special adverse tax effect of a party's income;
  • There is income that is a return of capital.

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