If you are ordered to pay child support, you may have questions about how much you will pay, as well as whether your financial circumstances can change the calculation.
Child support guidelines
In Virginia, a parent’s child support obligations are based on the state’s child support guidelines. These guidelines take several factors into consideration. The state may consider both parents’ income, which includes wages, salary and bonuses, the time each parent spends with the child and whether there are any additional costs for the child, like health insurance or significant medical expenses.
If both parents work or attend school and require childcare, the parent who pays for it may be entitled to reimbursement from the non-paying parent. The child support payments may be reduced if the paying parent is also financially supporting children from other relationships.
If you or your spouse are high income earners, the court may find that the standard child support amount under the state guidelines is not sufficient to meet the child’s needs and the standard of living they are used to. It may increase the amount of support as a result.
If you have significant additional income from investments or other sources outside of traditional employment, that may be added to the calculation.
The court may also consider whether the child is involved in extracurricular activities that they should continue participating in, whether the child is enrolled in private school or tutoring, and if so, may find that it is in the child’s best interest for the parents to continue paying for it.