[quote]Melody's answer is the way it is and in some cases that is unfortunate. Just like PM stated above the courts consider FIRST CS orders first. He will have to pay daycare if he leaves in a state that allows it, from what it sounds like he does.
CS will most likely NOT be modifed just because he has other children to support- that's just the way it goes. I don't agree with it, it's just the way it is... [/quote]
Again, depending on where you live. Here in NY, the only consideration is a NEGATIVE towards subsequent children, since the amount of basic child support for each child (and alimony if applicable) is deducted from the non custodial parent's GROSS income (also minus an allowance for FICA). So, the more children receiving child support, the less children down the line get in child support.
Here in NY, there is the "Self Support Reserve", which is the category my stbx fits in. Although his POSSIBLE income is close to $40K, his ACTUAL 2006 income was only about $20K. Deduct out FICA, deduct out child support paid to first child... and he is left below the self-support reserve (which is about $13,500). The law won't allow (again here) the non-custodial parent to fall below the poverty level. That's why my daughter is only entitled to $300 a year, versus the $7,392 a year the first child gets.
The "system" further sucks in that: While my daughter's child support is FORCED to be calculated based on the actual 2006 income (I can't use what he "might" make this year based on his "current salary"), conversely, stbx can NOT go to court on his FIRST order and ask for a reduction based on his actual 2006 income.
Why?????? Because 9 out of 10 lawyers here will tell you it is a waste of time. Most judges will say "well, while you're paying more than you should NOW.. someday your income may increase ABOVE what your cs is calculated at, and just as YOU'RE not going to get a reduction NOW, your ex won't get an INCREASE later, just b/c your income increases".
Now, folks from other parts of New York State (like Cassie I think, and someone else) could show examples where that's not true, as it appears the courts in different parts of the state apply the law differently; however, here on Long Island I've never seen it work any other way.
NOW, once my stbx's cs is set at that level... I am putting in language in our agreement that states he has to show yearly tax returns and all backup wage statements (1099's and W-2's) and his calculation he would AGREE to adjust OUT of the self-support reserve rate, when/if, his income warrants it. However, now that he KNOWS that, it would be just as easy for him to hide his income (ie: work for cash, hide under a business identity) therefore NEVER causing his income to "increase".
So, I have 100% financial responsibility for our daughter. But that said? I never would have gotten pregnant with her, and this is my main point, had I not felt that I would be ABLE to provide for her 100% if need be. "Need be" just came about much sooner (or really I never hoped for it) than one would have expected.