Many parents today are self employed. The child support payment process is governed by state law and the judge or support magistrate will decide how much the non-custodial parent has to pay in child support.

“Child support is calculated on the parent’s adjusted gross income,” said Family Law Attorney Joseph H. Nivin. “Where a parent is self-employed, we first determine the self employed person’s business revenue, deduct his or her legitimate business expenses, make the statutory deductions (FICA taxes, NYC or Yonkers taxes and other deductions such as court-ordered child support payments for other children.) Once these items are calculated we than determine the person’s adjusted gross income.” 

In some cases, your lawyer can present to the judge additional factors that may increase or decrease the state’s child support guidelines. It’s important to share with your lawyer if your child or children have expenses for special needs, daycare, education and health insurance.

The term discovery in a child support civil case can sound daunting, but don’t let it stress you out. It’s an important part of the case and a good litigation or civil law attorney will do the work by gathering documents and evidence to support your side of the case. Their goal should be to minimize the invasive nature of the process and keep you focused on your long term goals. 

Mr. Nivin says, “There’s one way to win a child support case and that’s by accepting an outcome where the child support amount is fair, and allows both parents to support their children while running their businesses and remaining financially solvent.