Gilbert L. Balanoff, P.C.
We understand that family law issues
often require attentive and careful consideration.
Gilbert L. Balanoff, P.C.
Child support is established by a court following the guidelines set forth in the statute in New York State termed the Child Support Standards Act (CSSA)
The maximum age for which a court can order child support in New York State is up to 21 years.
Parents are free to opt out of the CSSA requirements and deviate from the calculated sums provided they show the correct calculations under the CSSA guidelines first and can support the reasons why the con-custodial parent is to pay either more or less than the calculated presumptively correct amount.
In the simplest terms it provides for child support to be paid by the “non-custodial” spouse to the residential custodial spouse.
Currently the CSSA takes the combined gross income of the parties (after deducting the social security taxes actually paid) up to the sum of $136,000.00. Then depending upon the circumstances of the parties and their finances and the children’s needs that amount can be increased for calculating child support.
In order to complete not only the calculations for basic child support, but for the child support referenced as “add-ons” the ratio of each parents income is calculated. For example, if one parent earns a gross income of $100,000.00 for the year and the other parent earns a gross income of $50,000.00 for the year the ratio will be two-thirds to one-third.
Essentially if there is one child of the marriage the basic child support amount calculated is 17% of the gross amount. Assuming the total after social security taxes is about $138,000.00 and the court deems all of this to be accessible for child support the total child support amounts to $23,460.00 for the year. Using the parent with the larger income as the non-custodial parent that parent’s share of the child support amounts to $15,640.00 for the year (two-thirds).
The statute provides that the calculations for 2 children of the marriage is based upon the use of 25%; for three children 29%; for four children 31%; and no less than 35% for five or more children.
Additionally all income from all sources is to be included in the determination of child support.
If a party liable to pay child support is paying for other children under a court order those sums may be used to reduce the party’s income for calculated child support.
Where it can be demonstrated to the court that the calculated sum for child support is either unjust or inappropriate the court can make a finding of facts and deviate from the calculated amounts.
Where the parties actually share custody, the party who earns the larger amount of income may have to pay the full amount of child support to the other party even though the children are sharing time with each parent.
This is a simplified description and is only meant to give you a basic understanding of the way basic child support is calculated.
Add-ons for child support include paying for or providing health insurance coverage or at least a part of the costs; and payments for uninsured and unreimbursed costs for medical expenses. Medical expenses are expansive and include various matters such as non-cosmetic dental, hospital expenses, psychological expenses, optical expenses and more.
In some instances private school costs and expenses can be required to be paid for as well as college costs.
Modifications of child support depend on various factors and vary as to those factors if child support was established by court order or by agreement between the parties. A party entering into a written settlement agreement in which child support is established may find that the agreed amount can actually be subject to a modification as a result of a change of circumstances or as a result of a change in one parties’ income by 15%.
Child support payments made through the New York State Support Collection Unit can also find their child support being adjusted based upon certain statutory factors.
Arrears cannot be modified by a court for any period before an application to modify the amounts due. If a person believes that they are entitled to pay less and decides to reduce his/her payments without a court order, in almost all cases even if the excuse is valid, the court is prohibited from reducing or eliminating the amounts which are in arrears for nonpayment.
Obviously if a party believes they are entitled to a modification it is essential that the party file the application sooner rather than later.
This is a very basic overview and should not be deemed to be a complete description of child support obligations or adjustments thereto. A full review of the facts is required before making any recommendations.
Gilbert L. Balanoff, P.C
1539 Franklin Avenue
Mineola, NY 11501
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Having started out as a prosecutor (assigned to investigate and prosecute Organized Crime and Political Corruption cases), I then proceeded to enter private practice engaged in criminal defense. This prepared me for complex trial work which is sometimes required for complex matrimonial matters.
Nassau County Bar Association, Judiciary Committee
New York State Grievance Committee for the Second Judicial Department, 10th Judicial District
Nassau County Bar Association, Matrimonial Committee
Nassau County Bar Association
New York State Bar Association
Nassau County Bar association, Grievance Committee
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