The amount is based on the Child Support Standards Act. First, the court determines the gross income of the two parents together. Gross income is the amount of money you earn before taxes are taken out. (The court sometimes uses different rules if the income is over $143,000.) Some special expenses will reduce your income level for child support. Ordinary expenses are things you pay all the time, such as the electric bill, credit card bills, and rent. These bills will not reduce your income level for child support. Once the court determines your total income, it uses the formula below to decide the amount needed to support the child:
1 child = 17% of your income
2 children = 25% of your income
3 children = 29% of your income
4 children = 31% of your income
5 children or more = 35% of your income
When the court calculates support, it assumes that you can pay AT LEAST $25 PER MONTH, even if you receive public assistance.
You may be ordered to pay extra for child care and health care costs. Or you may be ordered to include the child on your insurance.