When can people deviate from the child support guidelines?

On Behalf of | Aug 21, 2020 | Family law

Parents in Virginia love their children and will do what they believe is best for them as they grow up. This means that parents need to provide for their basic needs such as food, clothing and a roof over their heads. However, parents also provide for healthcare, daycare, various school trips, electronics needed for school or other reasons, sports, other activities, take them on trips and provide for many other things to enhance their upbringing. This means that parents need to spend a significant amount of money on their children.

It is important that parents provide for their children whether they are married or divorced though. Both parents need to continue to provide financially for their children even though may not have as much time with the children as the other parent. This is why one parent is usually ordered to pay the other spouse child support when they divorce.

The amount that that a parent will pay for child support is generally based on the child support guidelines. These guidelines are based on the parents’ monthly income, the number of children and other factors. However, sometimes a parent is not able to pay the guideline amount due to unique circumstances or sometimes a parent needs more than the guideline amount. In these cases the parents could seek a deviation from the child support guidelines.

Whether a deviation is granted is based on a number of different factors, which include: child support payments parents pay for other children; travel costs associated with visitation; necessary child care while a parent is in school; debts of the parents; special needs of the children; tax consequences of parents being able to or not able to claim children for child tax credits; proceeds a parent may have received from the sale of the marital home and other factors to determine whether a deviation is appropriate.

Many parents are divorced each year in Virginia. The parents need to resolve many issues regarding the care of their children and one of those is child support. There are many factors that are used to determine both the child support guideline amount and any deviations from it. Experienced attorneys understand child support and may be a useful resource.