Why Do I Have to Pay Child Support If We Have 50/50 Custody? 

One of the common questions that many parents have when it comes to divorce and child custody is: “Why do I have to pay child support if we have 50/50 custody?” There are a few reasons that this may be true, including:

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Reasons to pay child support with 50/50 custody 

When two parents share 50/50 custody, there are several reasons why a child support payment is necessary. This support is intended to help the children remain in the same environment, and is meant to compensate the parent with a higher income for the time spent with the child. Child support is usually equal to 15% of the difference between the parents’ monthly incomes. The amount of child support that is required depends on the number of children being shared, the percentage of time that each parent spends with the child, and the parent’s income. 

Calculating child support under joint custody 

Many factors play a role in determining how much child support is due after a divorce. Joint custody is often a significant factor. If one parent has more than one child, the non-custodial parent’s child support obligation may be much less than the other parent’s obligation. Having overnights with the child is also a factor that may reduce child support. Regardless of your situation, you should seek legal advice if you have questions about how to calculate child support under joint custody. 

Income factor in calculating child support 

When two parents have equal time with their children, it’s often a good idea to consider an income factor in calculating child support with 50/25 custody. While this isn’t the only factor to consider, it can have a significant impact on how much child support you need to pay each month. The calculator you use is designed to assume that both parents earn a similar amount and both parents will share the cost of raising their child. However, in some cases, the parents may not have similar incomes and that would lower the amount. 

Visitation time factor in calculating child support 

The Georgia Child Support Commission recently authorized a study committee to consider the Parenting Time Deviation, a method of calculating child support that accounts for more time spent with the child. The study is meant to determine whether this method is appropriate for Georgia. This method is used when the parents exercise more time than standard visitation and includes a 50/50 custody arrangement. It is not, however, the only option. 

Parenting time adjustment factor in calculating child support 

Parents who share parenting time can qualify as custodial parents, which gives them certain tax benefits. For instance, a custodial parent can claim Head of Household status, Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Care Credit, and Child Tax credits. Noncustodial parents can claim a child tax credit from the custodial parent. The child tax credit is not available in cases where one parent has sole custody of the children. However, some states still allow one parent to receive a Child Tax Credit.