Calculating Child Support in New Hampshire

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Calculating Child Support in New Hampshire

Calculating Child Support in New Hampshire

Calculating child support can be a daunting task, especially with varying regulations from state to state. In New Hampshire, child support is determined using a set of guidelines established to ensure that children receive adequate financial support from both parents. Here’s a comprehensive look at how child support is calculated in New Hampshire.

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New Hampshire Child Support Guidelines

New Hampshire follows the Income Shares Model for calculating child support. This model assumes that a child should receive the same proportion of parental income as if the parents were living together. The goal is to provide financial stability and support to the child, replicating the economic experience they would have in an intact household.

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Steps to Calculate Child Support

1. Determine Gross Income

The first step in calculating child support is to determine each parent’s gross income. Gross income includes:

  • Wages, salaries, and tips
  • Commissions and bonuses
  • Self-employment income
  • Unemployment benefits
  • Social Security benefits
  • Alimony from a previous marriage
  • Other income such as dividends, interest, and rental income

2. Adjust Gross Income

Certain deductions are allowed to adjust the gross income, including:

Pre-existing child support payments for children from other relationships
Alimony payments to a former spouse

3. Calculate Combined Adjusted Gross Income

Add the adjusted gross incomes of both parents to determine the combined adjusted gross income.

4. Determine Each Parent’s Proportionate Share

Calculate each parent’s share of the combined income. For example, if one parent earns $60,000 and the other earns $40,000, the total combined income is $100,000. The first parent contributes 60% of the income, while the second contributes 40%.

5. Apply the Child Support Guidelines

New Hampshire has a child support guideline table that outlines the amount of support based on the combined income and the number of children. Using the combined adjusted gross income, find the corresponding child support obligation for the number of children involved.

6. Calculate the Final Support Obligation

Multiply the total child support obligation by each parent’s proportionate share to determine the amount each parent should contribute.

Example Calculation

Let’s consider an example where Parent A has an adjusted gross income of $50,000 and Parent B has $30,000.

1. Combined Adjusted Gross Income: $50,000 + $30,000 = $80,000

2. Proportionate Shares

  • Parent A: $50,000 / $80,000 = 62.5%
  • Parent B: $30,000 / $80,000 = 37.5%
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3. Child Support Obligation: Using the guideline table (hypothetically, assume the obligation for one child at $80,000 is $12,000 annually).

4. Final Support Obligation

  • Parent A: 62.5% of $12,000 = $7,500 annually or $625 per month
  • Parent B: 37.5% of $12,000 = $4,500 annually or $375 per month

Factors That May Influence Child Support

Several factors can influence the final child support amount, including:

Health Insurance: The cost of health insurance for the child can be factored into the support calculation.
Child Care Expenses: Necessary childcare expenses incurred while the custodial parent is at work or school.
Special Needs: Additional costs for children with special needs or extraordinary medical expenses.

Modifications and Enforcement

Child support orders can be modified if there is a significant change in circumstances, such as a change in income, employment status, or the needs of the child. Enforcement of child support is taken seriously in New Hampshire, and non-payment can result in wage garnishment, tax refund interception, and other penalties.

Calculating child support in New Hampshire involves a clear and structured process designed to ensure fairness and the well-being of the child. By understanding the guidelines and the steps involved, parents can better navigate the system and ensure that their children receive the necessary financial support. If you need assistance, consulting with a family law attorney can provide valuable guidance tailored to your specific situation.

CLICK HERE TO CALCULATE CHILD SUPPORT IN NEW HAMPSHIRE

Frequently Asked Questions About Calculating Child Support in New Hampshire

1. How is child support calculated in New Hampshire?

Child support in New Hampshire is calculated using the Income Shares Model. This model considers the combined adjusted gross income of both parents and the number of children involved. Each parent’s financial responsibility is proportionate to their share of the combined income.

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2. What counts as gross income for child support calculations?

Gross income includes all sources of income such as wages, salaries, tips, commissions, bonuses, self-employment income, unemployment benefits, Social Security benefits, alimony from a previous marriage, and other income like dividends, interest, and rental income.

3. Are there any deductions from gross income when calculating child support?

Yes, certain deductions are allowed from gross income to arrive at the adjusted gross income. These deductions can include pre-existing child support payments for children from other relationships and alimony payments to a former spouse.

4. How do health insurance and childcare expenses impact child support calculations?

The cost of health insurance for the child and necessary child care expenses are included in the child support calculation. These expenses are typically divided between the parents based on their proportionate shares of the combined income.

5. Can the amount of child support be modified?

Yes, child support orders can be modified if there is a significant change in circumstances, such as a change in income, employment status, or the needs of the child. Either parent can request a modification through the court.

6. What happens if a parent does not pay the ordered child support?

New Hampshire has strict enforcement measures for non-payment of child support. These measures can include wage garnishment, tax refund interception, suspension of driver’s or professional licenses, and other legal penalties.

7. How does New Hampshire handle child support for children with special needs?

Additional costs for children with special needs or extraordinary medical expenses can be included in the child support calculation. The aim is to ensure that all the child’s needs are met adequately.

8. Can parents agree on a different child support amount than what the guidelines suggest?

Parents can agree on a different amount of child support than the guideline amount, but the court must approve the agreement to ensure it serves the best interest of the child.

9. How long does child support typically last?

In New Hampshire, child support generally continues until the child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever occurs later. However, for a child with special needs, the court may order support to continue beyond this age.

10. What is the purpose of the Income Shares Model in calculating child support?

The Income Shares Model aims to replicate the financial support that a child would have received if the parents were living together. It ensures that the child’s standard of living is maintained despite the parents’ separation.

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