When a couple goes through a divorce, there are several legal matters that must be addressed before a marriage can officially be dissolved. After the custody of a child is determined, the court must then move onto the matter of child support. While only one parent may be given physical custody of the child, both parents are required to financially support their child. Child support payments are made by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent in order to continue care for their child even after the divorce. In New York, it is mandatory for both parents to financially assist their child until they reach the age of emancipation. These support payments are to be used for matters solely relating to the upbringing of the child.
There is no “one size fits all” solution to determining the value of child support payments. Every family is different, therefore every support case is handled as such. In order to make the best decisions, the state created the New York State Child Support Standards Act. This is a formula that acknowledges certain family dynamics in order to come to a conclusion on support payments that works for the family in question. The goal when determining support is to allow the child to maintain a standard of living they were accustomed to before the divorce. To do this, the Child Support Standards Act follows a percentage system. It takes a percentage of the parents’ combined income and distributes it in proportion to an income of $80,000. The state came to this conclusion:
There are several other factors that may be considered by the court when determining child support payments. This may include which parent has physical custody, both parents’ income, debts/assets, taxes, age, health, and more.
Parents are only required to financially support their child until they reach a certain age. This is known as the age of emancipation when a child is financially responsible for themselves. The state of New York typically allows support payments to finish when a child turns 21. Exceptions may be made to this under certain circumstances depending on the family. If a child chooses to seek a higher education, through college or trade school, the court may extend support payments until they graduate. In order to end child support payments, the child’s parents must file with the court to declare their child as emancipated. When the court agrees to this, support payments are no longer required.
If you or a family member is seeking representation for a child support case, contact Leslye M. Schlesinger today.
Leslye M. Schlesinger serves Rockland and Westchester County with compassion and integrity. With over 30 years of experience guiding clients through matrimony law, she now focuses on helping clients avoid litigation through alternative dispute resolution, including collaborative divorce and mediation. If you need an effective and committed attorney, contact Leslye M. Schlesinger for a consultation.