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How to Calculate Child Support

The first step in determining the amount of Child Support is to calculate the "Net Resources" of the Obligor (person paying support). The typical example is looking at the Obligor's wages/salary. However, the Obligor's interest, dividends, rental income, etc. are also included in the calculation. If it isn't excluded by Texas Family Code 154.062(c), there is a good chance it is included in the definition of "Net Resources". Obligors with fluctuating incomes can present a problem as you will need to determine an "average" monthly amount by looking over the past year or two of income.


Now, we look at the table contained in Texas Family Code 154.125 to determine the percentage of the "Net Resources" paid to the Obligee (1 child = 20%; 2 children = 25%; 3 children = 30%, etc.). Or, we look at the table in Texas Family Code 154.129 if it is a Multiple Family scenario. 


That will get us to our starting point to determine the amount of Child Support the obligor will be ordered to pay. The Child Support Guidelines contained in the Texas Family Code are not binding on the Court. A Judge is given broad discretion when setting the amount of Child Support. A Judge will consider the age and needs of the child, the ability of the parents to support the child, and many other factors to determine if applying the Child Support Guidelines would be unjust. 


Contact a Family Law Attorney with the Law Office of Brian Bagley to discuss your concerns about Child Support.