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How Does Child Support Work for High Income Couples?


No two families have the exact same budget or the exact same spending habits; this is true whether or not the parents are divorced.  When a couple gets a divorce, they must decide how to divide their marital assets and debts.  If they cannot reach an agreement during mediation, then the judge assigned to their case will use his or her own judgment about the fairest way to divide the marital property and debt obligations.  Regarding parenting time, it is also the parents who decide, in case they cannot agree, in which case the judge will set a parenting plan based on more than a dozen criteria about the children’s best interests.  Child support is the last step.  The court calculates child support according to a legally prescribed formula only after the parents have agreed to a parenting plan and only after the parents have submitted detailed disclosures about their income, assets, and expenses.  Although this is little consolation to the folks living paycheck to paycheck, parenting plans and child support really do get more complicated the more money you have.  If you and your ex-spouse were a power couple and you now disagree about child support, contact a Boca Raton child support lawyer.

Does Child Support Cover Horseback Riding Lessons?

The courts calculate child support based on how much money you have, not on how much money you wish you had or how much money the judge wishes you had.  Furthermore, the court bases its determination of the children’s expenses based on the money you used to spend on your children before you filed for divorce.  The questions about expenses on the child support worksheets only deal with necessities such as food and clothing, but parents must also work out who will pay for the children’s entertainment and extracurricular activities.

Will the court order you to move your children from private school to public school or to withdraw them from extracurricular activities such as sports or music lessons?  Probably not, and if it does, it will do so indirectly.  As long as a child’s parents are married to each other, it is none of the family court’s business if the family lives beyond its means.  After divorce, though, the court can only divide assets that the family owns and impose financial obligations that the family can afford.  The court will say, “Mom keeps marital assets A, B, and C.  Dad keeps marital assets D, E, and F.  The children are with Mom X days per year and with Dad Y days per year, and Dad pays Z per month in child support.”  If the family has been living beyond its means, they will realize that something has to give, and the kids might have to trade in their equestrian lessons for karate at the local YMCA.

Contact Schwartz | White About Co-Parenting Privileged Kids

A South Florida family law attorney can help you resolve disputes with your ex-spouse about co-parenting when the problem is not lack of funds.  Contact Schwartz | White in Boca Raton, Florida about your case.



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