When parents divorce in Idaho, both parties are required, by law, to support their children financially. Idaho law follows what is known as an “income share model” to determine child support. Using this child support model, the courts will estimate how much the couple would spend were the family to remain intact and then divides that figure between the parents, according to income, to determine child support amounts.
Several steps are involved in determining accurate child support figures, and the Idaho child support guidelines are challenging and complex. Although the Idaho Supreme Court’s Court Assistance Office offers several documents to help determine your estimated child support payments, it is usually best to consult an experienced family law attorney for help.
Kevin Shupperd of Shupperd Law is an experienced Boise divorce attorney who also assists clients in Nampa and throughout the state with navigating a wide range of family law issues, including child custody and child support. Read on to learn more about the process of obtaining child support in Idaho.
Determining Child Support Amounts in Idaho
As mentioned above, the “income shares model” determines the percentage of child support for which each parent is responsible. So, for example, when parent one earns $6,000 per month and parent two earns $4,000 per month, parent one is responsible for 60% of the total child support obligation. Parent two is responsible for the remaining 40%.
According to Idaho law, income is not the only factor determining the amount of child support the non-custodial parent must pay. In Idaho, the final custody agreement will also impact the final child support figure. As long as the children spend fewer than 25% of their overnights with the non-custodial parent, the “income shares model” will be applied without adjustment. The non-custodial parent will be responsible for making payments. However, because shared or split parenting agreements usually result in the non-custodial parent spending significantly more time with the children, the child support amount will be adjusted to account for each parent’s expenses.
On top of the basic child support guidelines, the courts may determine childcare costs or adjust child support based on costs associated with transportation related to visitation. Both state and federal tax benefits, including child tax credits and dependency exemptions, may also impact the final child support amount in Idaho.
Who Makes the Final Decision on Child Support in Idaho
Although the courts will ultimately make the final determination regarding a child support award in an Idaho divorce, parents, with the help of a family law attorney using the state’s guidelines for child support, can negotiate a child support settlement. Often, a judge will support child support agreements negotiated in good faith.
Child support is often one of the most contentious family law issues. Kevin Shupperd is an experienced divorce and family law attorney that has helped countless clients to obtain favorable child support agreements, whether the divorce is amicable or contentious. Shupperd Law is committed to ensuring that you are treated fairly regarding child support, child custody, or any other aspect of the divorce process.
Contact an Idaho Child Support Attorney for a Free Consultation
Divorce is never easy. Let Kevin Shupperd sit down with you and help you to determine what your child support obligation might be based on Idaho law. He will discuss the factors used to determine a child support award, elements unique to your situation, and how those factors might apply to your case.
In addition to guiding you through the legal process of divorce in Idaho, Kevin will help you prepare for divorce mediation, settlement, evaluations, and litigation where applicable.
Contact Shupperd Law today to learn more about how our Meridian family law practice can help you make sense of Idaho’s child support guidelines and help protect your rights.