How much is child support in Texas?
Calculating Child Support in the Lonestar State
Texas courts use uniform, state-wide guidelines to calculate
child support payments. Generally speaking, the non-custodial parent must pay a
monthly child support amount that’s based on the Texas Child Support Guideline Formula,
which takes into account both parents’ income(s) and the number of children
that need support.
For child support purposes, the definition of “income” is
quite expansive – it includes wages, salary, commissions, tips, overtime, and
bonuses. It can also include severance, retirement or unemployment benefits, social
security or workers’ compensation awards, gifts, prizes, alimony, and net
rental income among other things. Add
all of these up to determine gross income.
Net income is then calculated by subtracting certain items
from the parent’s gross income, including social security taxes, state and
federal income tax, union dues and health insurance premiums for the children.
Once you have the net income, apply it to the guidelines based on the number
of children that need support, as follows:
1 child = 20% of Obligor's Net Resources
2 children = 25% of Obligor's Net Resources
3 children = 30% of Obligor's Net Resources
4 children = 35% of Obligor's Net Resources
5 children = 40% of Obligor's Net Resources
6+ children = not less than the amount for 5 children
For more detailed information on how to calculate child
support in Texas, see Understanding
Child Support in Texas.
Typically, child support payments will continue until the
child turns 18 or has graduated from high school, whichever happens later.
When to Hire an Attorney
The Texas child support laws are fairly complex, and both
parents in a child support case are legally required to disclose all of their
sources of income. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the sheer number of forms
and disclosures you need to complete. If you are on either side of a child
support request, you may want to contact a Texas family law attorney who can
explain how the child support guidelines work.