When married couples with children divorce, they must address more than asset division and other property issues. They must also address how they plan to raise their children as a divorced couple. In Illinois, child custody involves two main components. The allocation of parental responsibilities is the allocation of significant decision-making responsibilities. Parenting time is the time each parent spends with the child. Read on to learn about how parenting time can impact child support payments in a DuPage County divorce.
Do I Pay Less If I Have More Parenting Time?
Child-related expenses can quickly add up and child support helps unmarried, or divorced parents share financial responsibility for their children.
In Illinois, child support payment amounts are based on the parents’ respective net incomes. The amount a parent pays is almost exclusively based on the parents’ financial circumstances. The parent with the greater amount of parenting time is expected to make his or her financial contribution to the child by caring for the child and meeting the child’s basic needs. The parent with less parenting time is expected to make his or her financial contribution to the child through child support payments.
Many parents assume that the greater their amount of parenting time, or time directly caring for the children, the less they pay in child support. However, child support calculations are not this straightforward. The only situation in which parenting time influences the amount of money a parent pays in child support is when each parent has over 146 overnights with the child(ren) a year.
Child Support in Shared Parenting Situations
If both parents have the child at least 40 percent of the overnight parenting time, or 146 overnights a year, this is called a shared parenting scenario. When both parents have the child for a relatively equal amount of time, the court adjusts the child support obligation to reflect this fact. The total amount of financial support for which both parents are responsible is halved in shared parenting situations. Consequently, the paying parent’s child support obligation is decreased.
If you are a paying parent or “obligor” and you spend more than 146 overnights with your child, this can reduce your child support obligation. However, if you have the child less than 146 overnights, the amount of parenting time you have does not influence child support.
Contact a DuPage County Child Support Lawyer
In a shared parenting situation, the amount of parenting time a parent is responsible for can impact his or her child support payment amount. For help with child support, parenting time, and other family law matters, contact the knowledgeable Wheaton family law attorneys at MKFM Law. Call 630-665-7300 for a confidential consultation.