Do parents that share custody make child support payments?

There are many situations in which a couple with children is getting a divorce but they want to share custody. Shared custody arrangements mean the children will spend 50 percent of their time with each of their parents. What many of these parents who split custody with the other parent want to know is what the child support arrangement will be, or if there is one at all. Which parent is responsible for paying child support if they share custody with the other parent?

When the legislature enacted the Child Support Standards Act, they really did not contemplate a shared custodial arrangement. We have case law in the state of New York that says in a true shared custodial arrangement, the courts would consider the parent with the greater income as the noncustodial parent. That parent, even though there’s a shared custody arrangement, may be directed to pay child support to the less-monied spouse who would be deemed the custodial parent for child support purposes.

However, parties are not obligated to follow the Child Support Standards Act. They are permitted to decide to deviate from the Child Support Standards Act if they do have a shared custody arrangement. However, if they do not reach their own private agreement and they ask a court to determine it, right now under the current state of the law, the parent who has the greater income may be required to pay child support to the less-monied parent.

If you require experienced legal representation for divorce and family law matters, contact the Law Offices of Mark S. Paige, P.C. today to schedule a consultation.