Study finds disparity in child support rates among states

Ideally, the purpose of a child support plan is to make sure children are given financial support from both their parents. Child support payments are made to fulfill the needs of a child’s care and upbringing. Each state has its own guidelines to help courts determine the suitable amount for child support. But, have you ever thought about how child support may differ from state to state?

According to a new study, your child support payment may vary significantly, depending on the state where you live. Regardless of the circumstances of a household and their income, a distinct state-to-state inequality exists regarding the average support payment.

The study was based on a hypothetical family with two minors, a 7-year-old and a 10-year-old. The mother is responsible for 65 percent of the parenting duties and earns $45,000 a year, while the father’s annual income is $55,000. The results of the study indicate that the family’s child support payment could range from $402 to $1,187 a month, while the national average is $721.

Courts always have the discretion to decide or adjust the payment amount under certain circumstances and subject to the evidence presented. Also, the parents can always reach an agreement on support payment between themselves.

Child support is delicate – it should never leave a child’s needs unmet, but it should not drive the paying parent into poverty, either. Many times, the payment set in a child support order is too much when compared to a parent’s income. If this is the case, they may need to contact an attorney to discuss the possibility of having the payment amount changed.