Are You Liable for Child Support Payments?

Divorce is difficult for separating spouses, but when there are young children involved, the proceedings can often be even more complex.

Spouses will need to work out where the children will primarily live, whether custody will be equally split, and whether or not child support payments will be ordered.

While there are plenty of factors that go into all of these decisions, figuring out liability for child support payments can be especially tricky. There are a number of factors to consider when determining whether a spouse is liable for child support payments.

Statutory Formula for Child Support Payments

Nevada provides a basic formula for the starting point in calculating child support payments.

When one parent has primary physical custody, child support is calculated by taking the gross monthly income of the non-custodial parent and multiplying it by a percentage based upon how many children the separating spouses have.

Number Of Children Monthly Child Support
1 18% of gross monthly income
2 25% of gross monthly income
3 29% of gross monthly income
4 31% of gross monthly income
4+ 2% increase for each additional child after

Minimums & Maximums

There are presumptive minimums and maximums on the amount of child support per child one would be required to pay – as of July 1, 2016.

The presumptive minimum amount of child support is $100 and the presumptive maximum is $1,092 per child. This can be modified up or down depending on whether certain factors are met.

Both parents are responsible for financially supporting their children, and additional calculations are needed to determine who will bear the greater burden on child support payments. Generally, non-custodial parents and those with a higher gross monthly income are probably going to have higher child support payments than the soon to be ex-spouses. Different calculations are used when it is a joint custody situation and support is adjusted accordingly.

Calculating the percentage of gross income is rarely the end of the determining child support.

Factors Considered For Adjustments

Nevada law allows for courts to adjust the amount of child support and even exceed the cap in some cases, depending on a wide variety of factors.

Some of these include:

  • the cost of medical care and health insurance
  • whether there are any special needs of the child
  • public assistance paid in support of the child
  • any other expenses relevant to the child’s care.

A Las Vegas Family Law Attorney who understands how the child support calculation process works can help you decide the best steps for you and your family.

Another important rule to consider is that while most child support is paid periodically, in monthly payments, the court can also order a lump sum payment if it’s in the best interest of the child.

Delinquent Payments

Also, there are specific rules surrounding delinquent payments of child support. If a support payment is late by one month, there are penalties that MUST be added to the amount. The court can also impose interest and penalties on the unpaid amount. If there are concerns about the amount to be paid, it is best to address them prior to payments falling behind and penalties adding up.

Considerations For Special Needs Children

Another area that is often tricky is supporting a child that is handicapped. According to Nevada Statute, this support must continue until the child is no longer handicapped or is able to support themselves.

Self – Supporting qualifies as:

a) receiving assistance payments that meet the child’s needs

b) the child is working and financially supporting himself

Also, the handicap must have occurred prior to the age of adulthood or majority. The parent seeking child support beyond this point must bring the request before the child reaches the age of majority. Failure to do so will deprive the court of it’s ability to award additional child support. This will lead to your request for additional child support being denied.

Contact a Las Vegas Family Law Attorney

While child support payments can seem straightforward based on calculations and formulas, it’s clear there are many factors that go into determining the amount one can receive. For assistance with you divorce and child support matters, contact a reputable Las Vegas Divorce and Family Law Attorney today.

With over a decade of experience, including vast knowledge of high net worth cases, Shawn M. Goldstein is a seasoned attorney serving Las Vegas, Nevada who can help you find the best solution for you and your family.