Even if you have received full custody of your children you may still be wondering how much your ex-spouse will pay in terms of child support. Also, if your spouse has been granted full custody you may still be wondering how much child support you will have to pay. For you to determine how much child support you have to pay or how much child support you will receive you may want to know how is child support determined in SC.
Child support payments are usually made by non-custodial parents in order to support their child or children. In SC when court-ordered child support payments are being considered the court will consider the income of both the parents as well as the child support guidelines. Every state usually has its own set of child support guidelines and they are reviewed after every four years. Child support is considered based on the gross income of an individual. Other factors that will as well be considered are the other children in the household, the cost of child care, health insurance, and other extraordinary medical expenses.
When going to court for judgment on child support calculations you can use a child support calculator so you have the child support obligation average. However, you may need the help of a child support attorney to help you through the process.
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How is Child Support Calculated in SC?
When calculating child support payments in South Carolina the child support formula is not as straightforward as some or most tend to think. The monthly payments that the non-custodial parent is supposed to pay will be calculated based on the South Carolina Child Support guidelines. However, the payment that they make will depend on the child custody arrangements that they have in place.
It is necessary for child support to cover the child’s expenses that is their education expenses, childcare costs, medical care as well as any other necessary expenses. The income that you will get as well as the number of children that you have will influence the monthly child support payment. You can use a child support estimator to estimate the costs you will be making. Even so, you should remember that the court will consider more than just the general guidelines while evaluating the child support payments to be made.
During the child support hearings, the court will use their own worksheets in order to determine the monthly payments you are supposed to make. Every custody arrangement has a different worksheet. It would be advisable for you to take a look at the basic child support obligations that can be found in the South Carolina Child Support Guidelines as well as the worksheets.
What is Imputed Income for Child Support?
In the case whereby the court believes that the non-custodial parent paying child support is either unemployed or is underemployed, they can authorize imputing income to the parent. This means that the court will calculate child support based on the parent’s support obligation of what the parent is not based on their actual income but on what they are supposed to be earning instead. Even as this is the case there are acceptable reasons why a parent is unable to earn according to their potential income. If the parent may be developed a long-term disability that is likely to prevent employment the court will view this as a legitimate reason.
TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families) as well as other public assistance benefits can be imputed by the court to the recipients even though they are not included in the gross income. Even as this is the case the court will take into consideration the presence of handicapped or young children that the parent has the responsibility of caring for and that would impede the custodial parent’s ability to work.
In order for the court to determine the payment of child support the parent’s employment potential and their probable earning capabilities will consider the recent occupational qualifications, work history, earning levels in the community, and prevailing job opportunities of the parent.
Can Child Support Modification Be Carried out in SC?
Child support law in South Carolina is addressed in the South Carolina code §63-17-830. Both parents can request for an existing child support order to be added or reduced. However, for the request to modify child support to be approved, the court needs to see a substantial change in circumstances since the date of the last child support hearing. Below are some of the significant circumstances that can impact child support expenses;
- A significant increase in the non-custodial parent’s income or the custodial parent’s monthly income.
- Losing a job.
- Educational Expenses and medical treatment.
- Medical condition or a disability that may end up limiting the ability of the noncustodial parent to work.
- If one or more minor children have started living with you.
You should note that either of the parents has the right to request the state Child Support Services to review the child support order after a period of every three years.
It is important for you to note that requesting a modification of child support does not mean that the request will be granted. It is up to the court to decide if the modification is warranted. If the court is to deviate from the child support guidelines they will consider factors such as the ones referenced above.
When Can Child Support Be Terminated?
The non-custodial’s obligation to pay child support will usually end when the child turns 18 if they get married and becomes self-reliant. Even so, child support payments can continue past the age of 18 in the case where the child is still in high school. However, the child support payments do not exceed past the high school graduation period, the end of the school year or after the child, the child turns 19 years old.
In some instances, child support payments will continue past the age of 18 if there is a preexisting order in court. The court will order for child support payments to be made past the age of 18 years in the case where the child has preexisting physical or mental disabilities. Also, other exceptional circumstances can result in a parent paying child support to a child past the age of 18 years.
To get legal advice and help with issues regarding child support get in touch with a child support lawyer from Greenville Family Attorneys.