How Is Child Support Determined in the State of Texas?
Have you ever tried to figure out child support payments if you live in Texas? It is enough to make you run kicking and screaming to your nearest accountant. There is a specific formula, which our child support attorneys will try to explain.
However, never assume you understand the guidelines and make a mistake. Many factors can change these numbers. Further, some caps ensure a person does not have to pay more than they can afford.
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Texas child support guidelines
Your child support is based on a percentage of your net resources. Net resources are not the same as net income. (Net resources include all the money you are paid, not just your salary.) It goes up 5% for additional children.
For 1 child, you pay 20% of your net resources
For 2 children, you pay 25% of your net resources
3 children – 30% (raise 5% for each child)
When you reach 5 children, you arrive at 40% of your net income, and it stops there. Child number 6, you will not pay additional money on because you would exceed the 40% cap.
- Other children you support – If you have biological (or adopted) children from a previous relationship that you are under court order to support, this figure will be lowered. For example, if you are paying 20% on your first child, and you now have a second child by another partner, the support of the first child drops to 17.5%, a second child from a new partner drops their support to 16%. The percentage you pay and your child receives from your previous partner is lower with every child you produce in your next relationship.
- Adjustments – here are many factors that a judge can use to change the child support figure. This includes medical expenses, educational fees, and debts that affect the financial circumstances of the parent. Your attorney will tell you what can and cannot qualify for this adjustment. There are three factors the judge cannot use to make adjustments. They are:
- The sex of the parent paying, receiving, or the sex of the child the money if benefiting.
- The marital status of the parents.
- A history of the parent voluntarily paying more than he or she was ordered to pay in the past.
Things you should know
Your net income is all the money you were paid after taxes, insurance, and other expenses are taken out. It also includes money you earned outside of your regular job. It does not include return on the principal of a note, foster care payments, the net resources of a new spouse, or any TANF benefits you received.
Your gross income is what you earned before taxes or expenses.
Child support caps
People with a net income of $8,550.00 or more per month will pay $1,710.00 per month for their first child. They will pay $2,137.50 for their second child and $2,565.00 per month for child number 3. If there are other children to consider, then these amounts will change. For more information, contact our child support attorneys today.