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Three Facts about Child Support Calculations in Wisconsin

Posted on in Family Law

Waukesha County child support lawyerAs gender roles continue becoming more egalitarian and women are now often the primary breadwinner in a family, child support laws have changed to reflect the fact that many families often no longer have the traditional structure of a stay-at-home mother and working father. Rather than giving a mother full custody after a divorce and requiring only the father to pay child support, Wisconsin law now expects both parents to financially support their children and be actively involved in raising them unless there is a good reason to do otherwise. If you are getting divorced and want to learn more about child support laws in Wisconsin, read on. 

Primary Placement Requires Higher Payments 

Wisconsin follows the Shared Placement formula to determine child support payments. Payments are based on how many children are involved and how much time each parent spends with the children. If one parent has custody more than 75 percent of the time, he or she is considered to be the residential parent and has primary placement. While both parents are responsible for financially providing for their children, the parent with primary placement will necessarily receive larger child support payments as he or she has the children with them most of the time. But even when spouses share placement 50/50, one spouse usually pays the other child support. 

Payments Are Calculated According to a Parent’s Gross Income

Child support payments are calculated using a parent’s gross income, including any wages, tips, bonuses, commissions, etc. before taxes are deducted. Child support is also not tax-deductible for the paying parent, and the receiving parent does not have to pay taxes on the payments. Understanding your gross income, net income, tax deductions, and other financial issues is important when negotiating a divorce agreement. For example, the parent paying child support may want to negotiate more assertively for the right to claim the children as dependents on his or her taxes. 

The Receiving Parent Does Not Have to Account for How Money is Spent

Unless there is a legitimate question as to whether the children’s needs are being neglected, the parent receiving child support payments does not have to provide the paying parent or the court with detailed records about how funds are spent. Child support can be spent directly on the children, or on other things that indirectly benefit the children, such as housing and vacations. 

Call an Oconomowoc Child Support Lawyer

Whether you are paying or receiving child support, you need to know the law so you can make sure you are meeting your obligations to your child. For help with issues related to child support or other family law matters, get help from an experienced Oconomowoc child support attorney with Wolff & Sonderhouse, LLP. We offer free case reviews so you can meet our team and see what we have to offer. Call us today at 262-232-6699

 

Sources: 

https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/cs/home 

https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/files/cs/order/worksheet-shared-placement.pdf 

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