How Much More Will a Parent Pay If Their Child Custody Percentage Drops?

Child support is intended to assist the custodial parent with bills and expenses related to caring for the child. In joint physical custody situations in which both parents take on some of the cost of raising the child, child support may be lower. However, if child custody percentage drops for one of the parents, that parent may expect to see their child support payments go up, as they will not be fronting as much of the cost of raising the child.

It is hard to give a concrete number or percentage that parents may expect their payments to go up under these circumstances, as a judge will likely make a determination that is in the best interested of the child and fairness to both the custodial and non-custodial parent. Child support rules and laws may vary from state to state, so this also makes it difficult to estimate the percentage by which your payments may go up.

Child support is based on several factors that may include the income of both parents, the percentage of time that each parent spends with the child, available income tax deductions, mandatory payroll deductions and the child care costs incurred by both parents. With so many different factors to consider, it is hard to determine how much more the non-custodial parent will pay if the percentage of time they spend with their children goes down.

In situations in which the parents spend equal amount of time with the children, but one parent makes more than the other, the parent who makes more will pay the other child support. If the parent earning a higher income sees their custody percentage drop, they’ll pay more. If they spend more time with their children, the payments may go down. The opposite is true as well; if the parent earning less income sees their percentage go up, they will receive higher payments. If they see their percentage go down, they’ll receive less.

As payments are so variable and no two cases are identical, it is important to consider all of the variables and factors in your particular case.

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