5 factors considered when calculating child support in AR

Calculating child support goes beyond taking a percentage of the non-custodial parents’ income, and looks at several factors when calculating the final payment.

While going through a divorce can be emotional and stressful for a couple who has decided to end their marriage, it can be even more devastating for the children who are involved. Not only must a child adjust to living with a separated family, but there are often financial concerns as well. Many children of divorce experience a change in the quality of life that they had become accustomed to while their parents were married. Child support in Arkansas is designed to provide financial stability and bridge the financial gap that occurs when parents decide to file for divorce.

Child support model

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Arkansas calculates child support based on a percentage of the non-custodial parent's income. This means that the custodial parent's income is usually not calculated into the final child support amount. There are, however, several considerations that the court will take into account when determining how much each child will receive. According to the Arkansas Child Support Guidelines, these factors include:

1. Any medical circumstances or health care needs

Whether the child needs a basic medical insurance plan or has a condition that requires more extensive coverage, both parents are responsible for the child's medical expenses.

2. The child's educational expenses

All school fees, book expenses, tutoring, tuition, special education and other costs tied to the child's education are considered.

3. Whether any child care is required

Some single parents rely on child care while they are working. Both parents may be required to pay for these expenses.

4. Details of the parenting plan

The amount of time the child spends with each parent, as well as how far away the parents live from one another can increase or decrease the amount of child support owed each month.

5. The quality of life set during the marriage

In order to provide a more stable environment for the child, the courts will attempt to keep the child's quality of life as close to the same as possible.

Keeping the child's bests interests in mind

Arkansas courts keep the best interests of children in mind when making judgements regarding child support, parenting plans and child custody. If you are entering into the divorce process, you may want to consider speaking to a lawyer about your legal options. The divorce process can be somewhat challenging and may leave you feeling unsure of where to turn to. An attorney may help to make things easier by preparing you for what lies ahead.