How is child support calculated?

The Texas Family Code has child support guidelines which recommend that the Possessory Conservator or the non-primary Joint Managing Conservators pay a percentage of their net resources in child support. “Net resources” is defined as all income after taxes, social security, union dues, and health care insurance for the children are subtracted. The guidelines are dependent upon the number of children involved:

One child – 20%
Two children – 25%
Three children – 30%
Four children – 35%
Five children – 40%
Six or more children – not less than for five children

The court can fluctuate from these guidelines if it finds uncommon circumstances warranting higher or lower support. These percentage guidelines apply only to the first $7,500.00 of the monthly net resources. The court presumes that the appropriate percentage of $7,500.00 is adequate support for children, and it is up to the receiving parent to provide evidence to the court that the children need more. If the paying parent nets significantly more than $7.500.00 a month and the children’s needs justify higher child support, the court may order higher support. Additionally, the court typically orders the child support-paying spouse to also pay for the cost of the children’s medical insurance. Uninsured medical expenses, including co-pays or deductible amounts are generally paid equally by each parent.

The income of the custodial parent may be considered in setting child support, but it will probably have little effect on the amount of child support ordered.