Child support is a court-ordered payment that the non-custodial parent pays to the other for expenses related to caring for the shared children. While strong guidelines are in place, it is ultimately at the discretion of a judge to determine the amount of your payment.
Most people use a child support calculator to arrive at a dollar amount, only to discover the judge has a different point of view. It can be an unwelcome surprise. A child support attorney in Fulton County, GA can help you determine what you may anticipate regarding payment amounts beforehand.
You may also find the information below to be helpful as we explore the methodology courts use when calculating child support payments in Georgia.
Calculating Georgia Child Support Payments
The Child Support Commission of Georgia sets a standard dollar amount of what they believe it takes to raise a child from a financial standpoint. This amount is known as the Basic Child Support Obligation (BSO). It takes into account the adjusted gross income of both parents, the number of children involved, and current available resources.
Here is how you calculate your child support payment:
Take combined adjusted gross income (AGI) of you and your ex. Using the Child Support Obligation Table, find your AGI in the leftmost column. If you look to the right of that number, you can locate the payment amount according to the number of children you share. This number is your BSO
A family court judge then uses the BSO as a jumping-off point. Since each parent must pay his or her fair share, the judge determines the payment by comparing the income levels of each parent as well as other economic factors.
Keep in mind that the judge has proper authority to deviate away from or adjust typical child support payments. Adjustments for health insurance, extracurricular activities, and educational expenses can become part of the agreement.
Do I Need a Child Support Lawyer in Georgia?
It can be complicated to calculate child support in Georgia. Courts must verify income amounts, manage disputes, and discern what is in the best interests of the child. Hiring a child support attorney in Georgia can help you take advantage of critical provisions that the state has in place to protect families.
Your attorney also has the experience and capacity to discover if your ex is attempting to swing child support payments unfairly in his or her favor. The parent asking for child support may overstate his or her expenses and downplay his or her income to receive a higher amount. Conversely, the one who is paying may try to look as cash-strapped as possible. A trained attorney can spot these tactics quickly.
Schedule a Case Review with Charlton & Glover, P.C.
At Charlton & Glover, P.C. we have been serving families in Fulton County, GA in matters of child support since 1983. Our child support attorneys in Roswell are eager to learn more about your goals. Contact our office today by calling (770) 993-1005 or sending us a quick note through our request form.