Divorce Involving Children
A divorce involving children tend to be more complex as the divorce will affect many aspects of the children’s lives. To make the transition as least disruptive as possible, parents must make decisions about how the children will be raised, where they will reside, and how must time each parent spends with the children. Discussing these issues can be an emotionally charged time for divorcing parents and finding amicable parenting solutions isn’t always easy.
One of the biggest components of a divorce involving children is the need for child support. In Illinois, both parents are required to support their children. There are guidelines in place for calculating the amount of support a child is entitled to receive. However, parents retain the ability to make alternative agreements regarding child support as long as the needs of the children are met. In the end, the primary role of child support is to facilitate and promote the well-being of the children.
Calculating Child Support in Illinois
Child support is paid to the residential parent to assist with the child(ren)’s expenses including, but not limited to, household expenses, food, clothing, housing, transportation costs, educational costs, and medical care costs.
When calculating how much child support one parent pays to the other, Illinois has certain guidelines to follow. The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services provides detailed guidelines and worksheets that can help to divorce parents to determine the amount of child support required.
In Illinois, the determination of how much child support is owed is based on an “income share” model. This model factors in the net income of both parents and the number of overnights the child(ren) have with each parent.
The Illinois courts will apply these guidelines unless the parents agree to a different amount that meets the needs of the child(ren) or it finds the application of the guidelines to be inappropriate. To determine if the guidelines are inappropriate, the court considers:
- The financial resources and needs of the child;
- The financial resources and needs of the parents;
- The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage or civil union not been dissolved;
- The educational needs of the child(ren); and
- The physical and emotional condition of the child(ren)
When Does a Parent’s Obligation to Pay Child Support End?
Once child support is calculated, the parent required to pay child support continues to pay until one of the following occurs:
- The child turns 18 years old;
- If the child does not graduate high school until after attaining the age of 18, then the earlier of the date on which the child graduates high school or turns 19 years old;
- Emancipation of the child;
- Child gets married;
It is important to note that there are circumstances that will continue a parent’s obligation to support their child(ren). If the child has a mental or physical disability, a parent may be required to help pay for disability-related expenses beyond the child’s 18th birthday. Further, if a child goes to college or a trade school, a parent may be requested to help with college expenses including, but not limited to, tuition, room and board, and books.
These are just some of the common circumstances that could arise and affect the termination of child support. Receiving adequate support for your child(ren) is crucial to providing the best care and environment for your children after a divorce. As such, it is important to speak with experienced and skilled Barrington family law attorney that will be on your side from the start and help guide you through the complex process of divorce. Contact a Barrington family law attorney immediately if you have any questions.
Contact a Trusted Child Support Attorney for Help Today
Child support is a necessary part of the divorce process when a child is involved. The process of calculating child support and determining when it terminates is difficult and complex without the help of an experienced and skilled Barrington family law attorney who deals extensively with divorce, parenting time, parental rights, and child support.
To learn more, call Manassa Bojczuk, P.C. at (866) 390-0672 or fill out our confidential contact form for a free consultation with one of our experience and compassionate Barrington divorce lawyers. We are proud to serve clients at both our Crystal Lake and Barrington offices. Call today!