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How does child support get figured in high income cases?

On Behalf of | Jan 19, 2019 | High-asset Divorce

In the event of a divorce or a separation, a father who does not care for his child at least half of the time will likely be ordered to pay child support to the child’s mother. Many dads are more than happy to do so with the expectation that their money will go to help their child.

Still, Omaha, Nebraska, fathers are going to want their child support order to be fair. Not only is it perfectly right for a dad to expect just treatment under the law, as a practical matter, a child support order that is unfairly high could mean that a loving and well-intentioned father winds up facing serious legal trouble for falling behind in support payments he cannot afford.

In most cases, a Nebraska court will determine child support by using the state’s guidelines to calculate the financial responsibility each parent should bear for raising their child. The parent who does not have the child most of the time will pay their share of this obligation.

However, high-asset divorces and separations also frequently involves cases in which a dad is a well-paid professional or executive is otherwise a high-income earner. As the guidelines only contemplate a combined family income of up to $15,000 a month, or $180,000 a year, it means a judge has to use some discretion when ordering child support.

A judge cannot use this discretion to order less than the child support called for by the guidelines when a family earns $15,000 a month, but the judge need not order more support if a family’s income is higher, and the law gives the judge some non-binding guidance in this respect.

Whether the judge actually orders additional support depends on the circumstances. This thus presents a man with the legal opportunity to make sure that his children are provided for but that he is still treated fairly.