Many people have misconceptions as to what child support and maintenance are these days and how they’re calculated.
How is child support calculated in Illinois?
Historically, in Illinois, child support was based on the percentage of net income of the payor and the number of children. This has changed. Now, it’s a whole new game.
In Illinois, there are new statutory guidelines for the court to consider in calculating child support. These are based on the income of each of the parties, as well as the number of children.
How to calculate your child support and maintenance payments
To get a reasonable expectation of what child support and/or maintenance would be in your situation, you need to first look at the statutory guidelines and apply them to your circumstances and situation.
Support obligations (how much you will have to pay or how much you can expect to receive – depending on your unique situation) can be manually calculated. This can be cumbersome and confusing. Fortunately, there are also computerized programs for this. Most judges and lawyers utilize specialized software to determine these amounts.
Like any situation, the proper entry of the data may be relatively simple or a bit complicated. It’s not an exact science. We have had situations where the computer-calculated figures varied between each lawyer and the judge.
However, when you are contemplating a divorce, it is important to have realistic expectations as to child support and maintenance obligations.
- In some situations, both parties may be subject to paying child support, with each party paying the other party. In Illinois, this applies if you have the child or children with you for 146 or more nights per year. The calculations are still based on each party’s income. The party making more money will pay more per night than the party making less money.
- For maintenance (AKA alimony or spousal support), there are multiple threshold requirements to determine whether or not these payments apply in your situation. The court will consider:
- the income earned by each party,
- the standard of living during the marriage,
- the needs of each party,
- the duration of the marriage,
- and more.
If the threshold requirements are met, then there are guidelines that apply to establish how much maintenance is to be paid and how many years maintenance should be paid. The judge will decide, based on current and applicable state statutes, whether maintenance will be for a fixed term or for an indefinite period of time. The judge may decide to grant reviewable maintenance or may reserve the issue of maintenance altogether, to be revisited at a future date.
Contact Diamond Divorce Law Today
Knowledge is power, and the more you know as you begin the divorce process, the better off you will be. At Diamond Divorce Law, we can assist you with your dissolution of marriage and all the complications that come with it. Contact us today if you’d like to schedule a free initial consultation.
DISCLAIMER: Any information contained herein is solely for informational purposes. While it is important that you educate yourself, nothing herein should be construed as legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. For specific questions, we urge you to contact a local attorney for advice pertaining to your specific legal needs.