Child support in Alabama is typically ordered to be paid by the parent that is not the primary physical custodian of the children. Child support payments cannot be waived and are to pay the normal costs of raising minor children in Alabama.
Child support is based upon a complicated calculation. The factors that are taken into consideration in calculating the child support obligation are:
- The father’s monthly income
- The mother’s monthly income
- The number of minor children from the marriage
- The amount of insurance paid on behalf of the children
- The amount of daycare expenses paid on behalf of the children
- The amount of any pre-existent child support obligation from a previous relationship
Once the total monthly income figures of both parents are determined, they are added together to obtain a total income figure for both parents. This figure is then cross referenced in a table that has been issued by the Alabama legislature and published in Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration as the Alabama Child Support Calculation Guidelines.
These guidelines have the total child support obligation determined by the number of children for each total income level. This figure is then plugged into a formula that takes into consideration each parent’s percentage of total income, as well as payments made for insurance, child care, and pre-existing child support obligations.
After all of these calculations are made, the resulting figure is presumed to be the child support obligation of the payor parent, based on that parent’s proportional income. This presumption is hard to overcome, even by agreement of the parties. In other words, while the parties would be able to agree to a higher amount of child support, it would take extraordinary circumstances for the parties to agree to a lower amount of support.
This calculation become more difficult, and the need for the best divorce attorney becomes more apparent, when the combined income level of the parents exceed Two Hundred Thousand Dollars ($200,000) per year. That is where the Alabama Child Support Guidelines cut off, and do not provide figures for child support calculations. In these situations, the parties must agree to a reasonable figure, or the judge will determine what they believe is fair under the circumstances.
Calculation of child support can be difficult. However, our child support lawyers can help you properly determine the child support obligation in any divorce. Contact us today at 205-502-2000.