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Calculating Child Support in a Wisconsin Divorce

Posted on in Divorce

Milwaukee, WI child support divorce attorneyDetermining child support is an important component of the divorce process for couples who have children. Child support is seen by the courts as a way to protect children from the economic instability that could come from divorce.

Child support should be used to meet all of the child’s needs, such as housing, food, transportation, and medical care. It should also be used for items that may not be necessities but are things that the child became accustomed to during the marriage, such as camps and extracurricular activities.

If you are in a situation in which one parent has the children less than 25 percent of the overnight stays each year, then that parent will be the paying parent, and his or her income will be used. Child support will be calculated based on the following percentages of the paying parent’s gross income:

  • 17% for one child
  • 25% for two children
  • 29% for three children
  • 31% for four children
  • 34% for five or more children

If you are in a situation in which each parent has custody of the children for at least 25 percent of the overnight stays in a year, the percentages above will be used, but a court will also take into consideration each party’s income as well as the number of nights spent with each parent.

Special Circumstances

While these two models are used often, there are additional considerations that a court may look at to refine a child support award. A court may be willing to deviate from these two models if the payor has a low or a high income, or if the child has extraordinary expenses. 

In addition, a court will take into account a parent’s other child support obligations. A parent may be able to have a child support award reduced because of extreme hardship, such as loss of a job or illness. The courts are also equipped to handle situations in which different children spend different amounts of time with their parents.

Get in Touch with a Milwaukee Child Support Lawyer

If child support is an issue in your case, you should not go to court unprepared. While the law requires specific calculations to be made, there may be some parts of the calculation that are open to discussion, negotiation, and legal arguments. 

A skilled Milwaukee, WI family law attorney will look at all the issues affecting your divorce and make arguments to the court for what is in the best interests of you and your children. Our lawyers represent both payor and payee parents. Our firm can be reached at 414-271-1440. We offer free consultations to prospective family law clients.  

Sources:

https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/cs/order/tools

 

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