The goal of child support is to ensure that the child’s standard of living is the same or better than before the divorce. As a result, Massachusetts has some strict child support guidelines. If you are paying or receiving child support, it is important to be aware of these guidelines. Read on for more information regarding child support in Massachusetts.
What are the Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines?
The state of Massachusetts has child support guidelines in place to outline the importance and rationale behind child support, as well as what they will consider when determining child support. The guidelines are in place to ensure the following:
- That all parents are financially responsible for their children
- That all a child’s survival needs are provided for, and that the child has a higher standard of living, if possible.
- The child’s standard of living does not decrease as a result of the divorce
- Both parents have a subsistence level of income
- Child support can divert from standard guidelines when a child has special needs
- Parents will bear any additional costs resulting from the maintenance of two separate households
- Non-monetary contributions and involvement of both parents are taken into account
- Monetary and/or in-kind contributions of both parents outside of the child support order
- All children receive the necessary health care insurance
- Ensure child support orders are consistent, simple, and make sense
- Streamline administration
How is Child Support Determined?
Massachusetts courts recognize how important child support is to the well-being of a child. As a result, they will carefully consider a number of factors in order to calculate child support. Some of these factors may include:
- The cost of child care
- The cost of the child’s health insurance
- The number of children in your household
- Your child custody arrangement
- Child-related expenses
- Sources of income
- Each party’s earning capacity
When can I stop paying child support in Massachusetts?
In Massachusetts, most parents will have to pay child support until their child is considered emancipated upon his/her 18th birthday. That being said, if your child has certain special needs or wishes to attend college, you may request the court extend the support until a later date.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding child support in Massachusetts, contact our firm today to speak with an experienced family law attorney.
Contact our Firm
For over 30 years, The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. has provided quality legal support and representation for clients in Bristol County and all of Massachusetts. Our firm’s experience eases the stress of clients while providing the legal services they deserve. If you need help through a contested divorce, contact The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. for a consultation today.