Court Refuses to Deviate From Child Support Standards Act Requirement

Court Refuses to Deviate From Child Support Standards Act Requirement

A mother had filed a petition for child support. On the basis of this filing a hearing was held before a support magistrate. The magistrate initially found the father’s bi-weekly child support obligations under the Child Support Standards Act was $396.00. It was then reduced by the support magistrate to $270.00 bi-weekly. The support magistrate rendered a decision which stated that applying the Child Support Standards Act was not appropriate in this case. The basis of the magistrate’s decision was that the child spent between 35% and 40% of the time with their father. The support magistrate felt that this constituted significant time sufficient to justify a deviation from the Child Support Standards Act.

Mother Files Objection (appealed) Support Magistrate’s Decision

The mother in her appeal argued there was a significant difference between the parties’ financial resources. The Family Court Judge reviewing this matter agreed with the mother’s arguments. The Family Court Judge made new findings requiring the father to make child support payments of $436.00 bi-weekly. The Family Court Judge stated in his custody cases the amount of time a child spends with the non-custodial parent should not be the driving force for a deviation with regard to the child support payments. The court held in absence of compelling factors, a deviation in child support from the presumably correct amount was not warranted in this case.


Attorney Elliot Schlissel

In most shared custody or joint custody cases the non-residential custodial parent has to pay the full amount of child support to the custodial parent. This is true even if each of the parties spend similar amounts of time with the child or children. The father should be careful when negotiating these agreements. However, in shared custody cases if a court is unsure of who should be paying child support to the other parent the courts will generally force the parent who has greater income resources to pay child support to the other parent.

Elliot S. Schlissel is a father’s rights lawyer representing fathers throughout the Metropolitan New York area for almost more than 45 years.