Child Support: State and Federal Law


Child support was at one time determined by a hodgepodge of laws that created wide disparities in child support amounts and charges that support levels were too low. Federal law now requires that all states create guidelines, which the courts must use to determine the amount to be paid in child support. In New York these guidelines are based primarily on the income level of the other parent, the number of children and a few other factors, but the level of support should hardly ever decline below a certain level. If there are special circumstances the court will listen and perhaps make adjustments to the amount. If a parent fails to comply with the order of support they can be held in contempt of court and face up to six months of incarceration, garnishment of wages and suspension of driving ands professional licenses.