You want the needs of your child to be met throughout their life, and up until the age of 18, it’s also you and the other parent’s legal obligation. Yet, this fact shines no light on the number of complex factors the court considers when issuing an order of support. There are two main documents the court uses to express the financial responsibility each parent has to their children. The first is a Child Support Order, and the second is the Washington State Child Support Worksheet. These documents work in conjunction with one another, and each will be discussed in greater detail below.
As explained above, the court’s primary objective is to secure a standard of living that meets the child’s developmental needs. In working to achieve this goal, the state created a standardized economic table listing the parent’s shared support obligation (RCW 26.19.020). What support bracket you fall within is determined by the combined monthly net income of you and your spouse. Standards for determining which are set forth in RCW 26.19.071 (3), income sources to be included in gross monthly income, (4) income sources excluded from gross monthly income, (5) and standards for determining net income.
The basic child support obligation is the total amount that is to be shared by the parents. The portion of the total support obligation one parent must pay is based on the proportion of the total monthly net income their income accounts for. So, if the total combined monthly net income for you and your spouse is $5000 and your net income is $3000 of this, you are required to provide 60% of the basic support obligation while your spouse is to provide the other 40%. As with other Family Law related issues, the important considerations are highly fact specific.
Luckily, our child custody and support attorneys in Bellevue are experts in the field. They will provide you with the understanding and information necessary for you to make a strategic decision in service of your larger goals. Child support is one area of family law that, along with the parenting plan, can have some of the most long-lasting affects on your life. For this reason, speaking with an attorney is of the utmost importance, and our child custody and support attorneys in Bellevue are always here to help. They will help guide you through this tumultuous process, all while ensuring both you and your children get an outcome that’s most beneficial for all parties involved.