Child Support & Contribution to Expenses

Calculation of Child Support

As of July 2017, new child support laws went into effect that changes how the court sets child support.  Illinois now uses the “Income Share Model.” Child support is calculated by looking at both parties’ annual incomes. If you have 146 overnights with the child, this will reduce the child support paid, and equal parenting time will further reduce the child support paid.

Contribution toward out-of-pocket expenses, such as medical, educational, daycare and extra-curricular activities are a separate calculation and payment from child support, which both parties will be obligated to contribute based upon income levels.  Child support can be paid directly by the party or via a wage garnishment to the employer.

Child support continues until the child is 18 years of age unless the child is still attending high school full-time, in which case it continues until the child turns 19 or graduates from high school, whichever occurs first.  The law also allows for continued child support for children over the age of 18 but unable to emancipate due to special needs.

The issue as to what a parties’ true income is may be a contested issue in a case, and one that The Law Office of Erin M. Wilson LLC has experience in handling.  We can assist with the discovery of relevant information and the proper calculation of child support, which may include income-averaging, imputing income, or calculating support based upon the child’s needs.

Modification of Child Support

The law understands that circumstances change over time and therefore child support may need to be modified, increased or decreased.  The legal standard is a “substantial change in your circumstances.” Examples include a change in income levels or jobs, changes in living arrangements, or the children’s needs. The 2017 change in law itself is not a sufficient basis to modify support.  If you feel that you have a basis to modify your child support order, either as the payor or recipient of support, contact The Law Office of Erin M. Wilson LCC. Child support modifications in almost all circumstances must be via a court order, and not just an informal, even written, agreement between the parties.

Enforcement of Child Support

If child support is not paid or you are owed reimbursement for out-of-pocket child-related expenses such as tuition, activities or medical needs, enforcement proceedings must be initiated, also known as contempt, or a Petition for Rule.  Child support that is unpaid even after a child emancipates, can still be collected - there is no statute of limitation. There are a number of remedies available to the parent that is owed child support, which include, but are not limited, incarceration of the non-child support paying parent, interception of his or her federal and state income tax refund, and suspension of his or her driver’s license, and levying assets.  Any child support payments or portion of a child support payment that overdue more than 30 days accrues interest at 9% per year.

The Law Office of Erin M. Wilson LLC  has extensive experience enforcing child support and recovering monies owed to a parent.  We will aggressively pursue this in as cost-effective means as possible, and seek to require contribution to your attorney’s fees for the efforts.

Please contact The Law Office of Erin M. Wilson LLC for a consultation regarding support.