Child Support Calculations: Averaging Yearly Income

In a custody dispute, the noncustodial parent is required to pay child support to the custodial parent to support the child’s needs. Child support is calculated in Virginia based on something called the “Income Shares Model.” The attorneys at Smith Strong, PLC can help in obtaining child support for your child.

Recent Virginia Case Held That Child Support Cannot Be Based on an Average Calculation of Income

A recent Virginia child support case held that in making a child support calculation, the court could not average a parent’s income over a period of time to determine income for child support purposes. In a 2017 case, a father’s child support calculation was based on his average income over the past five years since his income tended to fluctuate on a year-to-year basis. However, the Virginia Court of Appeals ruled that this was not the proper way to calculate child support.

Child Support Guidelines: Based on Statutory Guidelines

Instead, the court’s calculation of child support is based on a presumptive amount of child support based on statutory guidelines using a parent’s actual gross income. The court has the discretion to deviate from these guidelines, specifically in cases where a parent’s income fluctuates from year-to-year. However, this may only be done after a determination of the presumptive amount of child support, based on annual gross income, has been determined.

Call the attorneys at Smith Strong, PLC today for a consultation to develop a comprehensive case plan for your custody matters. 

H. Van Smith
Trusted Virginia Family Law Attorney Serving Richmond to Williamsburg