Child support in New York is determined by the Child Support Standards Act (CSSA), a statutory formula that determines the obligations for both the custodial and non-custodial parents. The statute has a cap of $141,000.00 for combined parental income subject to child support. When a couple has combined parental income above $141,000.00, it is wise to work with an attorney experienced in high net worth divorce, even if you and your spouse already agree on child custody and support terms.
Why? There are two main reasons:
- High net worth situations provide many financial “points of negotiation” – including those that involve the children, but not child support. Real estate, bank and investment accounts, retirement, royalties, dividends, personal possessions – all of these become part of the discussion in a high net worth divorce, so do items like college savings accounts for the children. It’s important to ensure assets are divided equitably so that the children’s lives are disrupted as little as possible. To do so, you’ll need to consider more than just child support.
- The CSSA provides a “floor,” not a “ceiling.” Put another way, while the court requires couples to meet the bare minimum standards of the CSSA, parents who are better equipped to provide more than the minimum for their children may wish to negotiate a child support agreement that does more. There are many ways to opt out of the Child Support Standards Act and reach an agreement that better suits the needs of both the custodial and non-custodial parents, as well as the children as they move forward in their post-divorce lives.
An experienced New York family law attorney at the Law Offices of Paul A. Boronow, PC can help you ensure that your children’s needs are met now and in the future.