By now you have probably heard some rumors that the Illinois child support law will officially change on July 1, 2017. If you are currently under an obligation to pay child support, or you are the recipient of child support, you may naturally be very curious as to whether this law will affect your current support order. We have started to receive many calls from parents wondering if they can use this new law to decrease their child support obligation.
Unlike the current law that sets a percentage for child support based on a parent’s net income, the new law will be nowhere as easy to calculate. The new law bases its numbers on annual Illinois statistics composed by economists as to the average cost of raising a child in Illinois, divided into different categories for the average household income and number of children. It will also take into account both parent’s income, the number of overnights, and any other child care expenses.
As a result, Illinois will no longer focus only on the payor’s income. The payee’s income will be just as important as well as the number of overnights. If you are the payor and your ex-spouse earns just as much if not more income than you, and you have parenting time that averages 40% of the time, your child support may be reduced significantly if not completely eliminated. However, there is no longer a secret formula that parties can calculate for themselves without the assistance of an attorney. In addition, the court will not allow you to seek a modification simply because the law has changed. There must be an independent reason for the change in circumstances before you are allowed to seek a modification.
Talk to an attorney about the possibility of using this new law to either lower your child support obligation or increase your ex’s child support obligation.