In this article...

In this article we will be discussing How Is My Child Support Calculated and we will answer the questions of:

  • What is a Shared Parenting Model?
  • What Factors Go Into Determining a Child Support Award?
  • What is the Income Shares Schedule?
  • What is the Calculation for Determining Child Support?
  • What If One Parent is Currently Unemployed?
  • What is a Job Dairy?
  • What is Imputed Income?
  • What if I Work on Commission or Receive Bonuses?
  • What Happens if the Nonresidential Parent Refuses to Participate in the Case?
  • What is a Needs Based Order?
  • What Happens if I Lose My Job or Cannot Afford To Make Child Support Payments?
  • How Does the Court Determine Parenting Time for the Purpose of Child Support Calculations?

In this article we will be discussing How Is My Child Support Calculated and we will answer the questions of:

  • What is a Shared Parenting Model?
  • What Factors Go Into Determining a Child Support Award?
  • What is the Income Shares Schedule?
  • What is the Calculation for Determining Child Support?
  • What If One Parent is Currently Unemployed?
  • What is a Job Dairy?
  • What is Imputed Income?
  • What if I Work on Commission or Receive Bonuses?
  • What Happens if the Nonresidential Parent Refuses to Participate in the Case?
  • What is a Needs Based Order?
  • What Happens if I Lose My Job or Cannot Afford To Make Child Support Payments?
  • How Does the Court Determine Parenting Time for the Purpose of Child Support Calculations?

Illinois recognizes and requires that each parent of a child has a duty to care for and support their child. The State cannot mandate that a parent exercise parenting time but the Illinois courts do their best to ensure that each parent is doing their fair share to financially support their child.

What is a Shared Parenting Model?

Illinois has adopted a support model that contemplates the incomes of both biological parents to determine the support that each parent must provide for their child.The calculation takes into account if one parent has a higher income than the other and attempts to ensure that each parenting is paying a fair amount in accordance with the incomes involved. Additionally, this model takes into account the amount of time that each party spends with the child.

What Factors Go Into Determining a Child Support Award?

The primary factors that are involved in determining a child support award are the income of each party from all sources, the number of children between the party and the amount of parenting time that each parent has with the kids. Each of these factors will come into play when the final support figures are determined.

What is the Income Shares Schedule?

TheState of Illinois has published a comprehensive table that determines the appropriate support level for the child(ren) of the parties. This table is used by determining the adjusted net income of the parties and using the schedule to determine the total support that is needed for the child(ren).  

What is the Calculation for Determining Child Support?

After finding the support amount from the income shares schedule, you need to determine what your support obligation is. The calculation to determine that amount is your total net income divided by total net income of both parties and multiplied by 100. This calculation will determine the amount of the support that you should be providing the figure determined by the Income Shares Schedule.

What If One Parent is Currently Unemployed?

In the event that one parent is unemployed, you can ask the Court to take steps to determine or establish an income for the unemployed party. The Court has the ability to take a few actions to compel a person to find employment. Ideally, the situation is temporary but in the instance that a parent is intentionally unemployed or is avoiding finding employment, a party can ask the Court to intervene.

What is a Job Dairy?

A job diary is a court mandated job search. The Court can require that an unemployed individual seek work and report back to the Court on where they have applied, when, and the status/results of those applications. It is essentially the same process the unemployment office requires but it has additional scrutiny of being submitted to the judge and opposing party for review. The goal of this process is to assist in the unemployed person finding employment and to ensure that they are actually seeking an appropriate position.

What is Imputed Income?

If the Court feels that a party has voluntarily reduced or eliminated their income, the Judge may elect to have any support calculated at the previous income level. For instance, if a person had a job that made $100,000 annually and quit to take a job making $40,000 without legitimate reasons, the Court can choose to run support calculations at the $100,000 income level, which will be significantly higher.

This option is not used often but is used when a party is seeking to circumvent paying an appropriate support amount.

What if I Work on Commission or Receive Bonuses?

In a situation where a person works on commission or receives bonuses, you will likely need to reassess child support each year. You tend to pay child support on the income you earned last year for the next year under this model. Each time the calculation is run, you will be using the income from the last year.If you do not expect the bonuses or commissions to come through each year or to be reduced the next year, it is important to explain your position to the Court and attempt to use a separate income level than the one that was earned in the recent evaluation period.

What Happens if the Nonresidential Parent Refuses to Participate in the Case?

They are situations where a party seeking support for the minor children will have a parent that does not participate in the court case. In that situation the court can order that a support payment without the other parties’ income information based on the needs of the child.

What is a Needs Based Order?

A needs-based order is a support order that the judge enters after analyzing the expenses related to the child. This is generally an estimate of the support the nonparticipating party should be providing to the minor child. In general, these orders will be significantly higher than a traditional child support order.

What Happens if I Lose My Job or Cannot Afford To Make Child Support Payments?

It is important to stay current with your child support obligation. If it comes to pass that you can no longer afford the support order that is in place, you need to petition the Court to modify the child support order based on a change in circumstances.

How Does the Court Determine Parenting Time for the Purpose of Child Support Calculations?

The Court analyzes the number of overnights that each parent has when determining a child support obligation. In order to see a reduction in the child support obligation, each party needs to have at least 40% of the overnights. The Court will not calculate the support obligation based on the days or hours with each parent. It is strictly based on the overnights of each party.

 

Posted 
April 23, 2021
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