In this article...

Watch Our Video
Contributor
Kevin O'Flaherty

At the end of a marriage, the court has to decide on several issues, such as the division of property, child custody, child support, and spousal support or alimony. Alimony is financial support paid by one spouse to the other after the divorce. Alimony can affect child support obligations in Wisconsin. Our Wisconsin family law attorneys will cover how these impacts work in this article.


Child Support Guidelines in Wisconsin


The court will determine the amount of child support based on the state's guidelines. These guidelines consider several factors, including the income of both parents, the number of children, and the placement schedule. These child support regulations are used to ensure that there is necessary financial support for the children from both parents after the divorce.


There are only a few unique circumstances in which the court in Wisconsin would deviate from the child support guideline. For example, if a child has special needs or a new spouse's income is in the equation. The court must give a written explanation for the deviation away from child support guidelines. For the most up-to-date information on Wisconsin Child Support, please read our article, Recent Updates to Wisconsin Child Support Laws 2023.


Alimony in Wisconsin


Several factors are used to determine alimony in Wisconsin. These factors for determining are the length of the marriage, the earning capacity of each spouse, the age and health of each spouse, and the standard of living during the marriage. Unlike child support, Wisconsin has no guidelines for determining the amount and duration of alimony. Find even more information about alimony in our article, Wisconsin Alimony Law Changes 2023.

Mom holding son at her desk reviewing child support paperwork


Impact of Alimony on Child Support Obligations


The child support obligations of the paying spouse may be affected by court-ordered alimony. The court will consider the amount of alimony paid when determining the paying spouse's income for child support purposes. The paying spouse's income used for child support calculation will be their income after deducting the alimony payments. For instance, if a spouse makes $5,000 monthly and pays $1,000 in alimony, their income would be considered $4,000 monthly. This would result in lower child support obligations for the paying spouse.


If the paying spouse's income changes due to the end of alimony payments, the court may adjust the child support order to reflect that.


Impact of Child Support on Alimony

There is no direct impact on the amount of alimony awarded in Wisconsin from child support payments. However, child support can indirectly affect the amount of alimony paid or received by either spouse.


Suppose the receiving spouse is already collecting a notable amount of child support. In that case, the court may award less alimony, as the child support payments are meant to cover the child's financial needs.

Likewise, if there is a high child support obligation for the paying spouse, it may affect their ability to pay alimony. They may be unable to afford to pay as much alimony as they would have otherwise if child support payments heavily tax their income.


In all, while there is no direct effect on the amount of alimony in Wisconsin, child support can indirectly impact the financial support received by both spouses. The court uses numerous factors to determine the amount of alimony, like child support payments. Although child support payments may be considered, there is no guarantee there will be a significant impact on alimony payments. Divorcing couples need to understand the impact of child support on alimony and consult with a family law attorney to protect their legal rights and financial interests.

Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Each individual's legal needs are unique, and these materials may not be applicable to your legal situation. Always seek the advice of a competent attorney with any questions you may have regarding a legal issue. Do not disregard professional legal advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.

FREE Family Law & DivorceE-Book

Get my FREE E-Book

Similar Articles

Learn about Law