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California Child Support and High Net Worth Parents pt 5

Determining the Final Amount of Child Support


The formula "CS = K[HN - (H%)(TN)]" provides a starting point for calculating child support in California, however there are several additional factors that may be considered by the court in determining the final amount of child support. There are six main factors that court may consider before making a final determination which include health insurance costs; childcare costs; educational costs; tax filing status; non-monetary contributions; and extraordinary circumstances. When considering these additional factors, the court will typically hold a hearing to gather evidence and testimony from both parents. The court will then make a decision based on the best interests of the child and the specific circumstances of the case.


Health Insurance Costs

The cost of health insurance for the children is typically shared by both parents, and this expense can be factored into the child support calculation. The court may order the higher-earning parent to pay a portion of the children's health insurance premiums. This amount can be added to the base child support payment determined by the formula.


Childcare Costs

If both parents are employed and require childcare, the cost of childcare can be shared proportionally based on their incomes. If the parents share childcare expenses, the court may order the higher-earning parent to pay a proportion of these costs based on their income. This amount can also be added to the base child support payment.


Educational Costs

As children get older, their educational expenses can become significant. The court may consider these costs when determining child support, especially if there are private school tuition or other educational expenses involved. If there are significant educational costs, the court may order the higher-earning parent to pay a portion of these costs. This amount can be determined on a case-by-case basis.


Extraordinary Circumstances

In some cases, there may be extraordinary circumstances that warrant a deviation from the standard child support formula. These circumstances could include a parent's disability, a child's special needs, or a significant change in income. If there are extraordinary circumstances, the court may adjust the child support amount accordingly.

Additional Factors Courts Consider


Agreed-Upon Stipulations

Parents may reach an agreement on child support amounts outside of court, and their stipulated agreement may be incorporated into the child support order. This can streamline the process and reduce the need for litigation.


Judicial Discretion

In exceptional circumstances, the court may deviate from the DissoMaster formula and determine child support based on their own discretion. This may be necessary in cases involving unique financial situations, complex parenting arrangements, or special needs children.

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