If you and your spouse divorce, you will need to determine how you’ll care for your children without being in the same home. One of the issues you will need to discuss is the child support that will be needed from the noncustodial parent or the parent who has that obligation due to other factors.
In New York, there is a child support calculator that you can use to estimate how much you or your spouse may have to pay in child support. It’s important to keep in mind that the calculator is not precise, but it can give you a general feel for the kind of payment that may need to be made.
The New York child support calculator
New York’s child support calculator is very simple to use. You enter the number of children who will be receiving support as well as the noncustodial parent’s total gross annual income. For example, if you have three children and the paying parent earns $100,000 annually before deductions, the calculator estimates that they should pay around $26,100 annually in support.
New York has laws that dictate how much of a person’s income should go to support. It is broken down in this way:
- One child: 17% of the paying parent’s income
- Two children: 25% of the paying parent’s income
- Three children: 29% of the paying parent’s income
- Four children: 31% of the paying parent’s income
- Five children: 35% or more of the paying parent’s income
These rules apply up to a parent’s earnings of $148,000 after subtracting FICA, local taxes, and Medicare. On top of this, parents may also be responsible for medical support payments, out-of-pocket medical expenses, health insurance and more.
What if your income is very low?
The state does protect noncustodial parents who have low wages. Those below the Federal Poverty Level ($13,590 in 2022), may need to pay only $25 a month. Arrears are allowed, but they are also limited to $500.
New York also has a self-support reserve, so if the noncustodial parent’s income is below that level, then the support payment may be limited to $50.
These are a few things to keep in mind about New York’s child support obligations. There are many factors that help determine what to pay, but these will give you an idea of what to expect.