Attorneys Blog

New Child Support Guidelines effective September 25, 2017

There are new child support guidelines that have several important changes for parents:

“The Task Force recommended a number of clarifications and changes. Some are minor, while others represent new or modified provisions. The most significant include:

  • Increasing the minimum support order to $25 per week;
  • Removing the parenting time/child support calculation that was inserted into the 2013 guidelines;
  • Including a capped adjustment in the child support calculation for child care and health care costs;
  • Addressing child support for children between the ages of 18 and 23; and
  • Including provisions related to parental contribution to post-secondary educational expenses

Extensive information about all of the provisions of the child support guidelines can be found in the commentary that is included in the guidelines. Additional information on the quadrennial review of the child support guidelines can be found on the court website here:

“These child support guidelines shall take effect on September 15, 2017 and shall be applied to all child support orders and judgments entered as of the effective date. In recognition of the priority of the interests of the children of the Commonwealth, these guidelines are formulated to be used by all of the justices of the Trial Court. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that these guidelines apply in all cases establishing or modifying a child support order, regardless of whether the parents of the child are married or unmarried, the order is temporary or final, or the Court is deciding whether to approve an agreement for child support. There shall also be a rebuttable presumption that the amount of the child support order calculated under these guidelines is the appropriate amount of child support to be ordered. These guidelines are based on various considerations, including, but not limited to, each parent’s earnings, income, and other evidence of ability to pay. These guidelines are intended to be of assistance to attorneys and to litigants in determining what level of payment would be expected given the relative income levels of the parties. In all cases where an order for child support may be established or modified, a guidelines worksheet must be filled out, regardless of the income of the parties.”

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