Child support is perhaps the most common issue in Texas Family Law cases
involving children. Our office (
CokerLegal) helps clients establish, modify and enforce child support in divorce
and other child-related cases.
In Part 1 of my four- part post, I will discuss how child support is calculated
in Texas. In Part 2, how child support can be paid and when the obligation
to pay child support ends. Part 3 of my post will discuss modifying child
support and Part 4 will discuss how to enforce Texas child support.
- Calculating Child Support
In Texas, child support is calculated based on a percentage of the Obligor's
(the party paying child support) net monthly resources (income). Texas
does not take into consideration the Obligee's (the party receiving
child support) income. The income of the Obligor's spouse is also
not considered in determining the amount of child support.
Net resources include, but are not limited to, 100% of all wage and salary
income (this includes tips and overtime), self-employment income, social
security or disability benefits, worker's compensation, retirement
benefits, and spousal maintenance. Social security taxes, federal income
taxes, state income taxes, union dues, and the cost of health insurance
or cash medical support are deducted from the Obligor's resources
to determine the Obligor's net resources. These deductions are calculated
using the Texas Attorney General’s Tax Charts.
The percentage applied to the Obligor's net monthly income is based
on how many children the Obligor has with the Obligee and how many other
minor or disabled children the Obligor has with someone else that he or
she has a legal duty to support. For example, if the Obligor and Obligee
have one child together and the Obligor has one minor or disabled child
from a previous relationship and the Obligor is paying child support for
that child, the percentage applied to the Obligor's net monthly income
It is a common misconception that if the Obligor does not have a job then
they cannot be ordered to pay child support. If the Obligor is unemployed,
the court can order child support based on minimum wage. The amount will
be calculated the same way as if the Obligor was employed.
A good Texas family lawyer can help you figure out how much child support
you should pay or receive based on your specific circumstances.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of this post, which will discuss how Texas child
support can be paid and when the obligation to pay support ends. If you
have further questions regarding child support in your Texas Family Law
case, feel free to contact me, or one of the other attorneys at our office,
on-line at CokerLegal