New York uses the Child Support Standards Act (CSSA), which is a federal law to calculate what we call the presumptively correct amount of child support. It is based upon the combined parental incomes and then the number of children under the age of 21 or what we call “un-emancipated children” who are entitled to receive support. Then, it is applied on a percentage basis to that number. For example, one child is 17%, two children 25%, three children 29%, and so on. The incomes of the parties are compared to each other and prorated so that the non-custodial parent’s annual child support obligation can be calculated. Parties can opt out of this, or deviate, from the presumptively correct amount from the CSSA, by agreeing to something else based upon the facts and circumstances of this case. So long as the court believes this to be reasonable, it will be approved.
Robert Pollack is an experienced divorce and family law attorney in Long Island, New York. Contact The Pollack Law Firm, P.C., to set up a free initial consultation.