Who determines Child Support?

Posted by: time41

Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 04:48 PM

Okay. I realize all states have guidelines for determining how much child support; how long; etc.
I'm curious in a divorce, who brings up the topic? The judge?
For example -- we have a 4 year old child; wife makes double what I make; doing joint custody; should my attorney argue for CS from my ex-wife to me? Or, will the judge bring this up later in discussions? Do men get child support?
Posted by: M5M5

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 04:52 PM

Yes men do get child support. What kind of joint custody are you going for? Is your wife agreeing on joint custody? I believe you will need to file for CS but I could be wrong.
Posted by: Cinder2

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 04:56 PM

When you do the divorce it will be one of the standard issues brought up. The issues are normally: property division (both assets and debts), child custody and visitation, spousal support, and child support. Your lawyer would be very remiss if he/she did not automatically include these items in your petition.

Posted by: time41

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 05:44 PM

Oh, I realize that... My attorney already submitted a proposal to their "camp." However, my ex-wife said no to any idea of paying any child support to me. She will not agree to it she says... I was just curious.... My ex-wife is adamant in saying she will not pay me any child support..... I was just wondering if the judge brings up the topic once he sees the difference in incomes? As I said, my attorney has proposed a couple of figures for her in regarding paying of child support and the ex has said "no way" to both and "not going to happen at all" to the child support idea. Does the judge determine the outcome?
Posted by: M5M5

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 05:46 PM

It's not really UP to your wife whether she will pay child support or not. If the judge says she will pay, then she will be responsible for it. Meaning..if she doesn't pay what she is ordered to, she could face jail time, liscenses taken away (any and all), credit reporting, etc.
Posted by: time41

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 05:49 PM

So, if the two sides can't come to an agreement on a figure; or in my case -- her willing to pay AT all; will the judge step in and decide an amount/ outcome based on the state criteria/ formula?
Posted by: M5M5

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 05:52 PM

Yes, though it may not be the same judge as you are using for the divorce. In our case, the judge for the divorce sent it to the CS judge...which was a different hearing...and the CS judge set it up according to the state's formula.
Posted by: NancyD

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 05:54 PM

Every state has it's own calculator and takes different factors under consideration, but primarily, the amount of time each parent has actual custody and their respective incomes are what determine the final amount and to whom it is paid. If your STBX wife will have your child 90% of the time, you may still pay her CS even though she makes more money than you. If the physical custody split is 50-50, she may very well pay you some amount of CS, and if you have the child 90% of the time, she will likely pay more CS.

While each state has guidelines for determing child support, they can be deviated from if both you and your ex agree. In a consultation with your lawyer, you should discuss the various financial scenarios that physical custody would produce. Any back-and-forth negotiations between the lawyers on behalf of you and your STBX wife would have this on the table for discussion.

If you reach an agreement, it is written up as part of the divorce settlement and presented to court as part of the petition.

If you don't reach an agreement, he will refer the case to Family Court unless he has the power to make those decisions. Again it varies from state to state.
Posted by: Cinder2

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 06:33 PM

LOL that your wife will not agree to pay child support.

Ok, I figured out that you are in Illinois, where only the non-custodial parent's income is taken into account and they don't normally care about time-share or the custodial parent's income.

If you are planning on being the custodial parent this should work out very well for you, but if you are not, you should try to get a really good lawyer. You are going to have to ask the judge to deviate from the Illinois guidelines. I'm basing this on the incomes you stated on the spousal support board.

The problem is that it Illinois the non-custodial parent pays a flat percentage to the custodial parent. Since last year you made $57K and she made $280K, this would most likely be grossly unfair to you if you became the NCP.

Like I said, you might want to get someone who specializes in non-guideline cases.

Posted by: time41

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 07:13 PM

What about if we agree to Joint-custody of our child? Split-time.
Posted by: Cinder2

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 07:45 PM

I'm not that much of an expert on Illinois stuff. I don't think they have a guideline for split custody. I think you have to get a lawyer to argue it. I think one person is always the primary parent in Illinois.

Posted by: Lucy44

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/27/07 09:07 PM


Do you currently reside in your marital home? If not, who's looking after your child when the stbx is working?
Posted by: almostheaven

Your ex doesn't make those decisions... - 02/27/07 09:59 PM

The judge does. Your lawyer will request it. The judge will decide. If he tells her to pay, she'll pay or face the consequences...which don't always work, but oh well.
Posted by: googledad

Re: Who determines Child Support? - 02/28/07 06:21 AM

You could have joint custody and still be required to pay child support . The determining factor will be how much time you have with your child , if you were to have state minimum visitation ( EOW , split holidays , half summer ) expect to pay CS . If you were to be the custodial parent the STBX would be required to pay . Anything in between is up to the court . As Il . has mandatory mediation try to work up an agreeable parenting plan without resorting to the court deciding . In some cases due to a great income difference it is possible that the CP pay CS to the NCP .