Overview

Children benefit when financial support is provided from both parents. The parent who the child lives with the majority of the time supports the child by providing a home, transportation, clothing, and other things. The term “child support” usually refers to the money that the other parent pays to help support the costs of raising a child. Minnesota law has child support guidelines that are used to calculate support obligations.

The guidelines help determine three types of support: basic, medical, and child care support.

What do the child support guidelines take into account?

The Court will take into account the following:

  • The gross income of both parents,
  • The number of children, including any children from a previous or subsequent relationship,
  • Childcare costs, and
  • The availability and cost of medical support

These factors will help guide the Court to a starting child support amount that is supposed to be in the best interests of the child. The Child Support Guidelines Calculator provided by the state of Minnesota may be used to estimate the amount of child support that may be ordered on a case. However, this is just an estimate and the Court may deviate upward or downward from the guidelines under certain circumstances. To get more support requires proof that the children have reasonable needs that exceed the basic needs provided for in the guidelines.

Child support is based on the gross income of both parents. Gross income is the income earned before any deductions. This income is then factored against the needs of the children and allocates child support to the custodial parent based on income, need, and the time the children spend with each parent. Time with each parent is based on the number of overnights spent with each parent, which are then converted to percentages of time with each parent.

The Minnesota Child Support Guidelines have broken these percentages into three categories: less than 10%, between 10 and 45%, or between 45.1 and 50%. Practically speaking, the less overnights you spend with the child, the more child support you will need to pay.

The challenge of determining child support can be significant—an experienced Minnesota divorce attorney can help you reach a fair conclusion based on your unique situation. At Clausen & Hassan, our lawyers pride themselves on how they serve our clients. Please reach out today for your free consultation. You can call our office at (651) 647-0087 or contact us by email at info@clausen-hassan.com.