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Manhattan child support lawyers1 Nov 2017

In New York, child support is based on a formula. That means you should be able to arrive at the same child support amount no matter where you’re located in the State of New York. When you’re a parent, you want the amount of your child support payment to be accurate. Whether you’re paying child support or receiving it, you want to make sure that the amount is the correct amount according to New York law. An experienced team of Manhattan child support lawyers can help you make sure that your child support award is accurate.

What goes into a child support determination in New York

Child support in New York is based on a parent’s income. The law says that parents should pay a percentage of their income for their children’s support. For one child, the amount is 17 percent of each parent’s income. The amount increases with each additional child. The highest amount is 35 percent of income for five or more children.

There are a few deductions that apply. Parents can deduct for New York City taxes. They can also deduct for Medicaid payments and FICA tax. If a parent pays child support for another child or court-ordered spousal support, that’s deductible too.

Additions to a basic support award

In addition to the basic award of child support, your Manhattan child support lawyers can also help you understand what additional factors can change a child support amount. The court must order an amount for the children’s health insurance costs. This is called cash medical support. To determine how the health insurance amounts factor into support, the court determines the total cost of the insurance to the parents. Then, the court determines the proportional share of each parent based on income.

If the paying parent provides the health insurance, they take a deduction on the child support amount. If the parent who receives support provides the health insurance, the parent who pays support should pay an additional amount in order to cover their share of the health insurance costs. The court has the option to order either parent to maintain health insurance as part of the child support order.

The court also considers child care expenses. If a parent has child care needs because of work or school, the court can order an extra amount in order to cover the other parent’s share of these costs. The court can also adjust the child support amount if a child has extraordinary educational expenses.

High income and low income cases

If you have a high income or even if the other parent has a high income, there may be some special considerations in your child support case. At amounts above $143,000 per year, the court has the option not to apply a flat percentage of the parent’s income. In that case, it’s up to the parents to argue to the court as to why a certain amount is the most appropriate for the children. In this case, it’s critical to work with your Manhattan child support lawyers in order to document the children’s needs in order to prove the best interests of the children for child support.

When parents have very low income, there are exceptions in the child support formula. In that case, the court may set a low, fixed amount. Child support may be $25 or $50 per month in low income cases depending on the income of the paying parent.

How can a Manhattan child support lawyer help?

If you have a child support case, experienced Manhattan child support lawyers can help you make sure that the court gets it right considering all of the circumstances in the case. There may be some questions about the income of the other parent. If the other parent is dishonest with the court about their income, your attorney can help you conduct an investigation and prove the parent’s true income. You might work to gather bank account records, information from an employer or even evidence of a parent’s lifestyle.

What happens when a parent is voluntarily underemployed?

There may also be a situation where a parent doesn’t earn all of the income that they can. A parent may take a low paying job in an effort to avoid fair child support payments. In that event, you can work with your attorneys to gather the evidence to argue that the court should calculate child support as though a parent is earning income that they could earn if they worked to their full potential.

Additional children who are not a part of the order

If there’s a reason that the court shouldn’t follow the child support formula exactly as it’s written, it’s up to you to show the court. If you have additional children that you do not pay child support for, you can argue to the court that the child support award in the case is inappropriate because it does not allow you to fairly provide for the needs of additional children that you’re responsible for. In that case, the income of your new spouse may be relevant.

Working for justice

The court needs to have the evidence in your case in order to make the right decision. Your Manhattan child support lawyers can help you present this evidence to the court. They can help you understand how child support laws apply in your case and how you can gather the evidence to help the court reach the right result in your case.

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