How Is Child Support Calculated in New York?

The issue of child support is often a big concern for both parents during a divorce. In New York, the court uses specific guidelines to determine what amount the noncustodial parent must pay. The guidelines are based upon the noncustodial parent’s gross income and the number of children. Your gross income is determined after certain deductions for Medicare, Social Security and taxes are made.

Your gross income is then multiplied by the standard guideline percentage for the number of children involved, as follows:

  • 17 percent for one child
  • 25 percent for two children
  • 29 percent for three children
  • 31 percent for four children
  • At least 35 percent for five or more children

Additionally, the noncustodial parent's share of expenses related to childcare, medical and educational costs is added to the income percentage amount. The total amount of the percentage of income combined with the share of expenses is the basic amount of child support that must be paid.

It is important to note, however, that if parents have a combined income over $136,000, the court can consider the standard guideline percentages, but is not required to do so. Other factors can be considered in setting the full child support amount to be paid by the noncustodial parent.

If you already have a child support order in place, but the noncustodial parent is not paying the court-ordered amount, a family law attorney can assist you with enforcing the order. You can also obtain enforcement help from the New York Division of Child Support Enforcement. To learn more about your legal options in child support matters, contact Lauren B. Abramson, Esq. for help.

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