Will My New Spouse's Income Affect My Child Support Obligations?
When a parent goes through a divorce and later remarries, he or she may have concerns about how the new family will impact support obligations to the old family and vice versa. Questions may arise regarding whether new children will affect earlier child support orders and if a new spouse's income will be used to increase child support payments. The attorneys at MKFM Law can help answer these questions.
Child Support Modifications in Illinois
In Illinois a parent can be ordered to pay child support with a minimum payment amount calculated according to guidelines set by law. Illinois judges must follow the guidelines, unless circumstances exist which would allow the court to deviate from the guidelines to award greater or lesser amounts in child support. Two factors judges may consider when deviating from the guidelines are the financial resources and needs of both the custodial and non-custodial parents.
Generally, a new spouse's income is not considered when calculating the parent's net income for child support purposes. However, while a court may not look at a new spouse's salary directly, they may in very limited circumstances consider it if deviating from the statutory guidelines. This consideration is more apt to apply if a new spouse's income is very high, because the additional income allows the parent to meet his or her needs and more money is thus available to pay child support.
In addition to child support, a parent may be ordered to contribute to the following needs of the child: healthcare needs not covered by insurance; child care; education; and extracurricular activities. The ability to consider a new spouse's income becomes somewhat clearer when it comes to educational expenses. Illinois courts have allowed the consideration of a new spouse's income to determine the percentage of educational expenses to be paid by each parent.
Finally, a new spouse should remember that his or her tax refund can be seized to satisfy any arrears or overdue child support payments. Specifically, if the new couple files tax returns jointly, any refund due to them can be seized if one spouse is behind in payments.
Contact an Illinois Family Law Attorney
If your former spouse is seeking an increase in child support, or is seeking contributions for additional educational expenses based on your current spouse's income, an experienced and compassionate family law attorney can help. Contact the attorneys at MKFM Law today for a consultation.