Carton & Rosoff PC-Attorney at Law

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What counts as gross income when determining child support?

Parents in New York need to provide, at the very least, the basic necessities for their children. This includes food, clothing and shelter, but as most parents know there are many other costs that are associated with raising children as well. Therefore, the parents need to earn money in order to pay for everything. There are many different ways that people earn money though. The primary way is through employment, but people also earn money through investments, retirement accounts, social security benefits and other ways as well.

When parents get divorced they must still provide for their children using the money they earn through these various sources. However, generally how much they pay each month is governed by a child support order. When determining the child support obligation, it starts with determining each parent's gross income. This income includes any money earned from any of the sources stated above plus sources such as workers' compensation, unemployment benefits, stipends, military benefits and other sources as well.

Determining the exact amount a parent may earn from these various sources is not always the easiest task but it is something that must be done to ensure that each parent's true income is being used when making the determination. Child support determinations also involve more than just the parent's income. There are deductions that are made from the gross income such as for taxes or child support paid for a non-joint child and others that go into determining the exact child support obligation.

People earn their money in a variety of ways in New York and almost any form of income can be used when determining a parent's child support obligation. However, that is just the start of the process when determining child support. It may seem like a fairly straightforward process, but this determination can be complicated and it is important to understand the law to ensure one is paying or receiving the proper amount of child support.

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