You are here

How do judges decide how much child support to order?

Produced by Attorney Jeff Wolf for MassLegalHelp
Last Updated Sept 15, 2017

Judges use the Child Support Guidelines to figure out how much child support to order.

The Guidelines tell judges:

  • to use the parents’ Child Support Guidelines Worksheet. The Worksheet shows the judge:
    • the amount of each parent’s income and certain expenses,
    • the number of children the order will support,
    • the ages of the children the order will support, and
    • the amount of child support to order.
  • to look at the amount of time children spend with each parent, “parenting time;”
  • how to order child support for children between 18 and 23 years old, and
  • the reasons a judge can order a different amount of child support from the amount on the Worksheet. This is a “deviation.”

On September 15, 2017, judges will use the newest Child Support Guidelines

See

 

Find Legal Aid

You may be able to get free legal help from your local legal aid program. Or email a question about your own legal problem to a lawyer.

Ask a Law Librarian

If it's
Monday-Friday
between
9am and 4pm