Las Vegas Child Support Lawyer
Experienced Family Law Attorney in Clark County, Nevada
In Nevada, both parents have legal responsibility to provide financial support for a child, regardless of whether the parents are married to each other. Complex statutes and recently revised regulations determine of the amount of support.
Las Vegas family law attorney Joseph Gersten helps parents navigate through concerns and legal issues relating to child support. His substantial experience and investigative background enable him to fully protect his client’s interests and rights. At The Gersten Law Firm, your first consultation and case evaluation are always free of charge.
Calculation of Child Support in Nevada
Child support includes funds for maintenance, health care, education, and support. In general, a non-custodial parent pays support to the custodial parent. In cases of joint custody, the parent with higher income pays support to the other parent. Even if parents agree to an amount for child support, a judge reviews the agreement to determine whether provides sufficient support for the child and complies with the applicable legal rules.
Calculating the amount of support begins with applying a formula established in the state child support regulations. The calculation creates a presumptive amount of sufficient support. However, the regulations provide a number of circumstances in which a judge can deviate from the calculated amount.
Nevada child support calculations changed significantly on February 1, 2020, when new regulations went into effect. The revised calculation applies to every child support proceeding after the effective date, including requests for modification of existing orders. The current schedule for the base child support obligation is as follows:
- For one (1) child, the sum of:
(a) Sixteen percent (16%) of the first $6,000 of the obligor’s monthly gross income;
(b) Eight percent (8%) of monthly gross income over $6,000 but equal to or less than $10,000; and
(c) Four percent (4%) of monthly gross income over $10,000.
- For two (2) children, the sum of:
(a) Twenty-two percent (22%) of the first $6,000 of the obligor’s monthly gross income;
(b) Eleven percent (11%) of monthly gross income over $6,000 but equal to or less than $10,000; and
(c) Six percent (6%) of monthly gross income over $10,000.
- For three (3) children, the sum of:
(a) Twenty-six percent (26%) of the first $6,000 of the obligor’s monthly gross income;
(b) Thirteen percent (13%) of monthly gross income over $6,000 but equal to or less than $10,000; and
(c) Six percent (6%) of monthly gross income over $10,000.
- For four (4) children, the sum of:
(a) Twenty-eight percent (28%) of the first $6,000 of the obligor’s monthly gross income;
(b) Fourteen percent (14%) of monthly gross income over $6,000 but equal to or less than $10,000; and
(b) Seven percent (7%) of monthly gross income over $10,000.
- For each additional child, the sum of:
(a) An additional two percent (2%) of the first $6,000 of the obligor’s monthly gross income;
(b) An additional one percent (1%) of monthly gross income over $6,000 but equal to or less than $10,000; and
(c) An additional one-half percent (0.5%) of monthly gross income over $10,000.
The Nevada Division of Welfare and Supportive Services (DWSS) provides a free online child support calculator for determining the base presumptive amount of child support.
While the regulations provide a clear formula for calculating base support, applying the formula requires an understanding of what is included in a parent’s income for purposes of the calculation. The regulations include detailed provisions that govern what is (and is not) included in gross income for the calculation. The exceptions are more limited than the inclusions.
Deviations From the Calculated Child Support
The base calculation does not provide sufficient support for every child in every situation. The guidelines permit a judge to adjust the support obligation based on the needs of the child and the economic circumstances of the parents. In addition, a parent can dispute the base amount by providing evidence that the calculated amount is not adequate for a child’s needs.
The guidelines include the following reasons that a court may adjust the calculated base support obligation:
- Relative income of both households
- Other necessary expenses that benefit the child
- Obligor’s ability to pay
- Special education needs of the child
- Legal responsibility of the parties to support others
- Value of services contributed by either party
- Transportation costs of the child for visitation
- Public assistance paid to support the child
The reasons for deviation provide substantial opportunity for a parent to ask the judge to adjust child support up or down from the base calculation. A request for an adjustment is more likely to succeed if a parent is represented by legal counsel, since concrete evidence must be presented to the court in order to support the deviation.
Legal Representation in Clark County Child Support Cases
Whether you are a parent seeking support, responding to a request for support, seeking modification of an existing order or agreement, or negotiating a new support agreement, representation by experienced legal counsel is essential. Court review involves much more than simply applying the formula for calculating the amount.
The recently-revised Nevada support guidelines are extremely complicated. Applying those rules to your circumstances requires assistance from a knowledgeable family law attorney. In addition, presentation of evidence to the judge requires knowledge of procedural rules, as well as thorough understanding of what kind of evidence supports your claims and interests.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Trusted Las Vegas Child Support Attorney
If you face child support issues of any type in Las Vegas, Henderson, or elsewhere in Clark County, experienced child support attorney Joseph Gersten is here to help. Attorney Gersten understands that family law matters are difficult and stressful, especially when they involve children. His sensitivity and compassion help clients navigate through the most challenging issues.
Your initial consultation and case evaluation at The Gersten Law Firm is always free. Call 702.857.8777 or complete our online form to schedule an appointment.