Virginia Child Support Calculator
With this Child Support Calculator, parents in Virginia can reasonably estimate the child support payments they should receive or pay. Maintaining this calculator is a community service that is happily done. However, it should be noted that the calculator is not a substitute for a skilled child support lawyer. Meeting with a lawyer is good for looking at your family’s numbers and strengthening your case.
Before you begin working out the amount you have to pay, it is suggested that you have the following information written down accurately:
- Total annual income for both parents, pre-tax
- Monthly costs of any daycare
- Monthly costs of health insurance for child/children
- Number of ‘overnight’ visits each parent has with the child/children during the year
Virginia Child Support Laws
Every state deals with child support in its own ways. Virginia has guidelines outlined in the Virginia Code §20-108.2. A rather complicated and sophisticated formula is used to determine child support payments. The custody arrangement between parents will affect how this formula is used.
The different child custody arrangements are as follows:
With sole custody, the child stays with one of the parents for the most part of the year
In this case, the child will stay with each parent a minimum of 91 days out of a year.
This happens when parents have more than one child together, and each of them has custody of at least one child for most of the year.
How is Virginia Child Support Calculated?
In the state of Virginia, child support guidelines are based on the total income of both parents. Firstly, the gross income of the parents is needed to determine the family’s income. A parent’s gross income can be adjusted for government benefits, alimony payments, and other supported children.
A state table stipulates how much parents with different monthly incomes must spend on child support for households between one and six children. Should the combined family income be $35 000 or more, for example, it falls outside this table. Then, support will be based on a percentage of income, which can be 2.6% for one child or even 5% for six children. Child support obligations include health insurance costs and childcare expenses that are work-related.
The final child support obligation is then divided between both parents based on their respective incomes. For example, if one of the parents earn 60% of the family’s total income, they will be paying 60% of the child support expenses. The child custody arrangement will determine who must make payments. The non-custodial parent will have to pay the custodial parent a child support amount every month. Also, the non-custodial parent has to pay part of any necessary medical and dental expenses.
These figures can be greatly affected by custody arrangements. If, for example, there is a shared child custody arrangement in place, each parent’s share of the expenses will be adjusted.
With a split custody arrangement, the court will have to determine sole custody for each of the parents and then make the necessary adjustments.
Getting a Virginia Child Support Order
If it happens to be that your separation or divorce settlement did not include a child support order, or if you need help in finding the other parent of your child to start getting payments towards their care, there is something you can do about it.
Virginia has a Department of Social Services with a Division of Child Support Enforcement, also known as the DCSE. There, you will be able to find assistance in getting a child support order.
If you receive any public assistance such as Medicaid, you are immediately eligible to use the DCSE’s services. If you don’t, you can still apply for services by filling out an application form. You can find it here.
Once you have submitted an application, you will have to be patient as it can take up to three weeks before you hear back from the Department.
If your application has been given the green light, you will be assisted by the DCSE with getting a child support order. This order could include medical support. The state guidelines will be followed, and the child’s needs, as well as the parents’ abilities to provide for their children, will be taken into account. With this information, a monthly child support amount will be determined.
It is the hope of the DCSE to avoid the time and expenses of a court when establishing child support orders. If a parent does not agree with the child support order, an appeal process can be started.