*Orders are paid weekly, biweekly, monthly, or bimonthly. Divide by the frequency that applies to the way the noncustodial parent is paid.
DISCLAIMER: Use the Child Support Calculator to get an idea of how much a noncustodial parent might owe in child support in New York State. It is only an estimate and is adjusted to reduce the gross income by Medicare, FICA and local NYC taxes. The court may, under certain circumstances, deviate from the formula. In addition, other factors are routinely considered in setting the order amount. Read Child Support Standards Act to the right.
The Child Support Standards Act
The Child Support Standards Act was developed to ensure that child support awards in New York State were fair and consistent. The goal is to give children the same standard of living they would have if their parents were together.
The law states that the basic support award be set at a fixed percentage of parental income, depending on how many children for which an order is being requested:
| ||1 child||17%|
| ||2 children||25%|
| ||3 children||29%|
| ||4 children||31%|
| ||5+||At least 35%|
These percentages are applied to almost all parental earnings up to $136,000 minus Medicare, FICA and NYC tax deductions. Child or spousal support actually paid, based on a court-order or written agreement may also be deducted before calculating the child support order. Earnings include worker's compensation, disability payments, unemployment insurance, social security, pensions and many other forms of income. After $136,000, the court can choose whether or not to use the percentage guidelines.
In addition to the basic support award, the child support order must include medical support, which means health insurance and payments for any out-of- pocket medical expenses for the child. Either parent may be required to provide health insurance coverage for the child, if it is available at a reasonable cost. The basic award may be increased to include a pro-rated share of child care expenses, if the custodial parent is working or in school. In addition, the court may increase the award to include a pro-rated share of educational expenses for the child.
New York State laws protect low-income noncustodial parents.
- If the noncustodial parent’s income is below the Federal Poverty Level ($11,170 for 2012), the child support order may be established at $25 per month and the amount of arrears will be capped at $500.
- If the noncustodial parent’s income is below the New York State Self-Support Reserve ($15,080 for 2012), the child support order may be established at $50 per month.