You Deserve Justice

Why might you have to pay support if you share custody?

On Behalf of | Mar 29, 2024 | Child Custody & Support |

You have your child 50% – or close to 50% – of the time. You might even have your child more often than your child’s other parent. So, why do you have to pay your ex-spouse child support?

This is a situation that often confuses and frustrates a lot of people because they assume that shared parenting eliminates child support obligations – but that’s not actually true in all cases, particularly when one parent has a great deal of wealth and the other does not.

It’s all about the child’s needs

Child support is always based on the income of the parents and needs of the child. When parents have equal parenting time of their children and roughly equal incomes, there may be no child support obligation either way, since both parents are able to provide for their children in roughly the same fashion.

However, when one parent has significantly more income than the other, that puts the child in a difficult position. When they’re at the affluent parent’s house, they may enjoy all of the associated benefits – since there is plenty of money for extras. When they’re at the less-affluent parent’s house, where it may be a struggle to make sure the necessities are covered, the difference could be very noticeable.

Child support might then be ordered to balance things out, so that the child has the benefit of both of their parents’ income at all times, just as they would have but for their parents’ divorce. It’s essential to understand that child support can be used to pay for things like the child’s housing and transportation, as well as their personal needs. While that might end up benefiting your ex-spouse indirectly, it’s still an effort that supports your child’s needs.

Child support issues can be complicated, and you do need to protect your rights on the issue. If you have questions or concerns about the child support you’re paying, it may be time to get tailored legal guidance.