Experienced and Knowledgeable Child Support Attorneys in Buffalo

Separation not only impacts the dynamics of a family unit, but also the finances and care of the children. At Tully Rinckey, our Buffalo family and matrimonial attorneys understand the trauma and impact that a divorce or separation can have on you and your children, regardless of whether the split was amicable or not.

As such, child support options must be considered carefully with the children’s best interest in mind as a top priority. However, with the many nuanced rules and formulas New York has in place to determine child support, knowing the basic rules and rights regarding these obligations can make sure that your rights are being upheld during this process.

Our New York State team of child custody lawyers possesses a vast amount of combined experience practicing law to secure our clients’ wishes. You do not have to face your child support issues alone. Our team of capable and experienced attorneys is available to assist you today.

Understanding Child Support Laws in New York State

In New York State, child support is typically calculated using the Income Shares Formula; however, if a parent intentionally withholds information from the court about their income or is being evasive about it, the court may decide to use the Needs-Based Formula to determine the child support obligation. The Needs-Based Formula only considers the expenses the custodial parent claims to spend to support the children when calculating support. If this method of calculation is employed instead of the Income Shares Formula to establish non-custodial parents’ responsibility to pay child support, lower and middle-class non-custodial parents may be required to pay much more in child support. To ensure that you pay or receive your fair share of child support, you should seek the assistance of a professional and competent attorney.

For the care, maintenance, and education of children under the age of 21, either parent may be obliged to pay child support; however, the one who does so is the non-custodial parent. Based on the number of children they have and the parents’ combined income, the amount of child support owed by a non-custodial parent will change. When using the Income Shares Formula to calculate child support in New York, the following rules must be followed:

  • One child – 17 percent of the combined parental income
  • Two children – 25 percent of the combined parental income
  • Three children – 29 percent of the combined parental income
  • Four children – 31 percent of the combined parental income
  • Five or more children – No less than 35 percent of the combined parental income

By adding both parents’ incomes and figuring out the appropriate percentage of the total combined parental earnings, the Income Shares Method determines the fundamental child support obligation. This amount is the total amount of support that both parents are required to provide for their children. The amount is subsequently divided between the parents according to their respective yearly wages. After the amount has been prorated, you will be expected to pay child support in the amount assigned to you. Child support also consists of supplementary payments, referred to as “add-on expenses,” for the child’s or children’s uninsured medical bills as well as extracurricular or educational activities.

Can I Seek Child Support If We Were Never Married?

Unmarried parents who have children together have a legal obligation to provide for them financially and give them access to their health insurance and other advantages. Much like with children born into marriages, the amount of child support is set based on the children’s best interests and the financial situation of the parents. However, the family courts cannot make decisions regarding child support or custody until paternity has been established. This can be done in one of two ways: either by one or both parents filing a paternity action and asking for a court-ordered DNA test or by both parents voluntarily signing an Acknowledgement of Paternity form (typically at the hospital after the child is born).

What Happens if My Child’s Parent Refuses to Pay Child Support?

The parent receiving child support may file a “violation petition,” asking the court to take appropriate action if the other parent fails to abide by a support order. The payee must be served (delivered) with the petition. After that, a hearing is held to determine if the respondent has disobeyed the court’s order.

Delinquent parents risk having their bank accounts frozen, their passports revoked, their professional and business licenses revoked, and their tax refunds withheld if they don’t make their payments on time. If it is found that the payee willfully and knowingly disregarded a child support order, they could also be given a jail sentence of up to six months for contempt of court.

Tully Rinckey PLLC’s skilled and knowledgeable Buffalo child support lawyers treat each case with the highest attention and effort. Our team is here for you to protect your rights and achieve your goals.

To schedule an initial consultation with a member from our experienced team, contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at 8885294543 or info@tullylegal.com

You can also use our secure Live Chat feature to connect with us regarding your matter. Your message will be delivered to a secured firm account with a member from our team ready to assist you.

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