How the Calculation of Child Support Will Change in 2017

Right now, child support in Illinois is calculated based upon the paying parent’s net income and the number of children shared. All of that will change, come July 1, 2017. What sort of changes can you expect, and how might it impact your case? The following explains.

Old Child Support Calculation

Whether done during divorce after an acknowledgment of paternity has been entered with the family court or Illinois’ Department of Human Services (DHS), the amount of child support owed each month is based upon a percentage of the paying parent’s net income. The percentage varies, depending on the number of children shared between the parents. As an example, the percentage is 20 percent of the paying parent’s monthly net income if they share only one child. It increases to 28 percent if they share two children, and 32 percent if they share three children. Each additional child adds another percentage increase.

New Child Support Calculation

As of July 1, 2017, Illinois will be moving to the shared parenting model. Used throughout many states in the country, it uses the net income of both parents and then configures each parent’s financial obligation to the child. Various factors, including income and time with the child, will be used to help determine each parent’s obligation. Additional expenses, such as extracurricular activities, daycare costs, healthcare costs, and other special considerations may also be configured into the formula.

If each parent shares at least 146 nights with their child (40 percent of the year), then the formula will change to accommodate dual expenses. For example, a parent that has their child nearly half the time will likely have an extra bed, extra food, and extra transportation costs that they might not otherwise have.

In many ways, this may be considered a positive change for parents that have a close bond with their child and are financially secure. Unfortunately, it can also create a contentious situation. A parent who might not have otherwise been interested in having their child at least half the year might fight for more time. Alternatively, a lower earning parent could be left disadvantaged if the parenting time is nearly evenly distributed.

Preparing for Your Child Support Case

Some parents may be affected by the upcoming changes. Others may hope to secure a child support modification once the laws change. No matter what your situation, contact Abear Law Offices. Our attentive and experienced Wheaton child support lawyer can help you determine if and how the new calculation model may impact your case. In every circumstance, we pursue the most favorable outcome. Schedule your consultation by calling 630-904-3033 today.