If you are in family court, each parent needs to submit a financial disclosure affidavit, last filed tax return, usually a current and/or representative pay stubs along with tax returns. Each parent is also supposed to submit their W-2s and 1099s which were filed with the tax return. However, if you’re in a Supreme Court on a divorce matter, then you submit a “net worth statement” instead of the financial disclosure affidavit. There’s also a whole broad range of documents and information that is discretionary which can be exchanged or ordered to be exchanged by the court.
How Is Child Support Assigned And Calculated in New York State?
Child support is pursuant to the Child Support Standards Act. The income of both parents must be calculated. For each parent’s income calculation, there are a few routine deductions for child support: FICA, Medicare tax, and the respective city tax. This arrives at “adjusted gross income.” The parents’ income is then combined to arrive at combined parental income.
Then the following percentages for child support calculation are applied to the parents’ combined income:
- 17% for one child
- 25% for two children
- 29% for three children
- 31% for four children
- 35% for five or more children
For example, if dad makes two-thirds of the combined parental income and mom makes one third, that’s the proportionate share.
Table 1: Non-Custodial Child Support Payment Chart
|Parent||Income less deductions||Combined Income||% of combined income||No. of Children||Amount of Child Support required for non-custodial parent|
1 Child @17%
2 Children @ 25%
3 Children @ 29%
In New York State, it is only the non-custodial parent (the parent the children do not live with) who actually pays child support. In the above table, if the dad was the non-custodial parent, he would pay $10,771 a year for one child, which is about $898 a month. If the mom was the non-custodial parent, she would pay $5,386 a year for one child, which is $449 a month. Under New York State law, the custodial parent never pays basic child support to the non-custodial parent. The only thing a custodial parent would pay is if the non-custodial parent happens to incur any add-on expenses such as health insurance, medical expenses, educational costs, and child care. That said, the child support amount may be contested.
What Are Some of the Most Common Reasons Why Child Support Or Related Matters Are Contested?
One of the common reasons child support is contested is “income.” There can be many reasons why one parent or the other’s income is deemed inaccurate. One example is if a party has self-employment income. Likewise, if the parent owns a business, it may be highly subjective what the parent actually makes (as opposed to what s/he claims on taxes). There could also be a host of financial disclosures which would need to take place if the parent owns a business.
Another common reason could be the person has on-the-books income versus off-the-books income. A lot of financial disclosures would need to be submitted to arrive at the parent’s true income.
Yet another way child support could be contested is when one child lives with mom and the other child lives with dad. Then you have to calculate who pays what for each child.
Another way child support could be contested is the “Above the Cap” Calculations. In other words, as of 2022 under New York State law, one calculates combined parental income up to the statutory cap of a $163,000. The law does adjust the cap once every two years based on the CPI index, which means that the statutory cap might go up by about $5,000 to $10,000 each two years. But the contest is not for combined parental income below $163,000. It’s almost always only for combined parental income above $163,000.
With high income cases, the court may decide on a cap of $250,000, or $300,000 or $350,000, or $400,000. Or the court doesn’t use a cap at all. There are cases where the court went up as high as $600,000 to $800,000 in combined parental income.
For more information on Contested Child Support Cases In New York, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (347) 797-1188 | (914) 362-3080 today.
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