When a couple with children gets divorced, they are expected to maintain certain financial responsibilities for any children the couple had while they were together. This is commonly referred to as child support. The state of Illinois calculates child support as a basic percentage of a non-custodial parent’s net income. Here’s a look at how child support is awarded and paid in Illinois
Child Support Calculator
As we noted, Illinois sets child support payments as a percentage of the non-custodial parent’s net income, and that amount varies depending on the number of children the couple had while together. Here’s a breakdown of the net income based on the number of children:
- 20% for one child
- 28% for two children
- 32% for three children
- 40% for four children
- 45% for five children, and
- 50% for six or more children
It’s worth noting that the above percentages are used as a baseline amount and can be adjusted by a judge if they feel that a different amount would be in the child’s best interest. Factors that go into determining a child’s best interests include:
- The child’s probable standard of living had the parents not divorced
- The child’s physical and emotional condition during and after the separation
- The child’s current and future educational needs
- The financial resources and needs of the child and both parents
The percentages can also be adjusted based on the custodial agreement. The above percentages are listed for a traditional custodial agreement where one parent is the primary caretaker of the child and the other parent has some weekend and summer visitation rights. If the parents have a joint or shared custody agreement, the percentage of child support will likely be much less, because parents are more likely to have similar financial responsibilities to their children. It’s also worth noting that you can’t get out of your child support obligations simply because you don’t have a job or regular income. Even if you don’t have a job, the court may still set a monetary monthly support payment if they rule that you are voluntarily unemployed or if you’re underemployed (working fewer hours than the parent is able to work).
Terminating of Altering Child Support In Illinois
A parent who has been ordered to pay child support can petition to have that payment altered or terminated if they can prove certain circumstances suggest the payments should reasonably be altered. If unaltered, a child support obligation will continue until a child turns 18, unless that child is still attending high school full-time. In that case, the support will continue until the child turns 19 or when they graduate, whichever comes first.
The state of Illinois can also order child support to continue after a child’s 18th birthday if the child is disabled, incapable of self-support, or if the child is attending college. For more information on child support payments in Illinois, contact a family law attorney today.