Frequently Asked Questions

Divorce Eligility and Grounds
Process and Procedures
Express Divorce
Division of Property
Child Support
Spousal Support and Maintenance
  • Who receives Child Support in a divorce?

    Generally speaking, Child Support is paid to the custodial parent (the parent who has physical custody of the children) by the non-custodial parent.

  • What is the maximum age for Child Support eligibility?

    In New York, children under the age of 21 are eligible for Child Support.

  • I am the custodial parent, how much Child Support am I entitled to?

    In New York, children under the age of 21 are eligible for Child Support.

    • 1 child……………….17%
    • 2 children……………25%
    • 3 children……………29%
    • 4 children……………31%
    • 5 or more……at least 35%
  • We have an existing Family Court Order, can it be incorporated into our divorce?

    Yes. If you have an existing Family Court Order concerning Child Support or Custody, we will incorporate the terms Ordered by the Family Court into your Judgment of Divorce. This will serve to continue any existing Order of Custody or Support that had been previously issued by the Court. We will, of course, need to include a copy of any such Order(s) in your divorce filings.

  • My children are over 18, am I still entitled to Child Support?

    Yes. You are eligible for support as long as your Children are under 21 and not legally emancipated (financially independent).

  • My child is under 21 but is financially independent and no longer resides at home, is Child Support required?

    If your child is legally emancipated, that is, your child is financially independent, lives on his or her own and you do not claim this child on your tax return, you will not be able to seek support for this child even if he or she is under the age of 21.

  • How is child support paid?

    Child support may be paid weekly, bi-weekly (every two weeks) or monthly depending on the parties' preferences. Child support may be paid directly to the custodial parent by check or money order or through the Child Support Services of the Support Collection Unit in your specific County. If you opt for child support to be paid through Child Support Services, the payor spouse may have his or her Child Support obligation deducted (if employed) from his or her paycheck on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Child Support funds are then forwarded to the Support Collection Unit by the payor's employer and the payee spouse will receive regular child support payments through the Support Collection Unit.

  • I am self-employed, how will my income be calculated for purposes of Child Support?

    In the case of self-employed parties, establishing child support income can be tricky because of how self-employed individuals receive income distributions or how they calculate their actual earnings. The income stated on self-employed individual's tax return is not always an accurate representation of their actual earnings. Unless you and your spouse are willing to impute (agree on a reasonable amount as and for income), you will need to consult with our legal team in order to arrive at an accurate figure for purposes of calculating Child Support.

  • I pay Child Support for children from another relationship, will that reduce my current Child Support obligation?

    Yes. If you have an existing prior Order or a written agreement requiring you to pay Child Support for children from a prior relationship, you may deduct any such amounts actually paid as Child Support from your gross income. This will essentially reduce your Child Support income when calculating your present support obligation.

  • I pay Spousal Support, will that reduce my current Child Support obligation?

    Yes. Spousal support paid to your spouse will reduce your Child Support income dollar for dollar such that your income will be reduced by the amount actually paid for spousal support prior to calculating a Child Support obligation.

  • How are "add-on" expenses such as tuition, extracurricular activities and out of pocket medical expenses shared by the parties?

    "Add-on" expenses, such as educational and out-of-pocket" medical costs, which are reasonably necessary for the maintenance of the minor children are generally shared by the parties on a pro-rata basis. This means that each party will only be responsible for these expenses in proportion to their income. For example, if you earn $60,000 annually and your spouse earns $40,000, you will be responsible for 60 percent of any add-on expenses and your spouse will be responsible for 40 percent.

  • I am unemployed and do not have any income, do I have to pay any Child Support?

    In most cases, if you are unemployed and do not have any alternate source of income, your Child Support obligation will be reduced to $25 per month. This is the minimum support requirement permitted in New York. Family Court judges, may, at their discretion, impute income to unemployed parties if the Court believes that parent's unemployment is unjustifiable or intentionally prolonged.

  • Neither party is seeking Child Support, can Child Support be waived entirely?

    No. Child Support is a right and entitlement that belongs to the minor Child or Children and, therefore, cannot be waived entirely by the parties even if they agree to waive their rights.

  • Support is already collected through the Child Support Collection Unit, do I still need to address Child Support as part of my divorce?

    Yes. We will need to furnish the Court with documentation evidencing that Child Support has previously been established and that Child Support Services are in place.

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