Child Support: Everything You Need to Know

Child support is a legal obligation that is imposed on parents to financially support their children. If you are going through a divorce or separation or if you are a single parent, understanding child support is essential. This article will provide an overview of child support and what you need to know.

What is Child Support?

Child support is a court-ordered payment that one parent makes to the other to financially support their child. The payment is intended to cover the child’s basic needs, such as food, clothing, housing, and medical care. Child support is typically paid until the child reaches the age of majority, which is 18 in most states.

How is Child Support Calculated?

Child support is calculated based on a variety of factors, including the income of each parent, the number of children, and the custody arrangement. Each state has its own guidelines for calculating child support, but in general, the non-custodial parent (the parent who does not have primary custody) will be required to pay a percentage of their income towards child support.

Enforcing Child Support Orders

If a parent fails to pay child support, the other parent can take legal action to enforce the child support order. This can include wage garnishment, seizing tax refunds, and even incarceration in extreme cases.

Modifying Child Support Orders

Child support orders can be modified if there is a significant change in circumstances. This can include a change in income, a change in custody arrangements, or a change in the child’s needs. If you believe that your child support order should be modified, you will need to file a motion with the court.


Child support is an important legal obligation that parents have to financially support their children. If you are going through a divorce or separation or if you are a single parent, it is important to understand how child support works. By understanding how child support is calculated, how to enforce child support orders, and how to modify child support orders, you can ensure that your child is financially supported. If you need legal assistance with child support, be sure to consult with an experienced family law attorney.

Thomas Elliott

Education: Brooklyn Law School, Brooklyn, New York. Pace University, White Plains, New York.
Professional Associations and Memberships: American Bar Association, New York State Bar, The Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Brooklyn Bar Association, National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA).

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