Las Vegas Child Support Lawyer
Child support payments awarded during a divorce or paternity case can have major consequences for the paying parent, the receiving parent and their children. In Nevada, these determinations are governed by a particularly complex set of child support guidelines. Contact our experienced Las Vegas child support lawyers for more information or assistance.
Guiding Parents Through Nevada’s Complex Child Support Process
At Kainen Law Group, our Las Vegas child support attorneys provide attentive, insightful representation to mothers and fathers in Southern Nevada. Our experienced lawyers assist clients with initial child support calculations, child support modification, custody matters and other related issues. We are highly attuned to the issues that can cause unavoidable complications. Contact our legal team for a hands-on approach tailored to meet your needs.
Pursuing Fair and Equitable Child Support Payment Calculations
Child support in Nevada can be complicated. Your obligation can be based upon your income alone or upon parents’ incomes. The amount of custody time you have with your children can also impact child support.
Our attorneys work closely with our clients to pursue workable child custody and support arrangements. We are committed to helping paying parents hold their payment obligations to levels they can reasonably afford, and helping receiving parents obtain the financial support their children need.
Nevada Child Support Guidelines
When it comes to establishing who pays child support in a divorce and how much is paid, the courts turn to guidelines and formulas set out in Nevada law. You may think that the determination of child support would be fairly straightforward, but there are actually many ways the court may deviate from the guidelines and award more or less than the formula amount, and there are a dozen factors for the court to consider in making this determination. The family law attorneys at the Kainen Law Group in Las Vegas provide knowledgeable, effective advice and representation throughout the divorce process and help ensure that any child support award is fair and adequately addresses the needs of the children.
Facts about child support in Nevada
Both parents have a duty to provide for their children’s maintenance, health care, education and support. That duty does not end when parents split up but continues until the child is an adult, or even longer if the child has a disability and cannot become self-supporting. Through an award of child support, the court ensures that both parents continue to support their children after a divorce.
The process begins by looking at the gross monthly income of the noncustodial parent. Gross (pre-tax) income includes all income from any source. If the spouse is self-employed, a deduction is allowed for certain legitimate expenses. The monthly child support amount to be paid by the noncustodial parent to the parent with primary custody is then calculated as a percent of the payor’s income, according to the following table:
- For one child, 18 percent
- For two children, 25 percent
- For three children, 29 percent
- For four children, 31 percent
- For each additional child, an additional 2 percent
These amounts, however are subject to presumptive maximum amounts established in the law, which vary according to the paying spouse’s income level and are adjusted for inflation each year. Nevada law also establishes a minimum support amount of $100 a month which will be ordered unless the spouse is unable to pay that amount. A spouse cannot get out of paying child support simply by being willfully unemployed or underemployed. In these cases, the judge will impute an appropriate amount of income, and your attorney can help establish the proper amount with the court.
The formula above applies when one parent is given primary custody of the children. If physical custody is shared jointly, then a support amount is calculated for each parent, and the higher-earning parent pays the difference between the two amounts to the lower-earning parent. Physical custody is considered joint when each parent has custody for at least 40% of the time.
Reasons for deviation from the Nevada child support guidelines
The parents may agree to a deviation from the formula amount, so long as the deviation is justified. If the parties disagree on the amount of support, then a hearing will be held to determine the proper amount. Although the amount established under the guidelines is presumed to be adequate, this presumption can be overcome by proving that a child’s needs would not be met by that amount. As your attorney, we will argue for or against a deviation from the guidelines as necessary to meet your needs and establish a fair amount of support.
When deciding whether to deviate from the formula, the judge is required to look at a dozen different factors set out in the law. These factors are:
- The cost of health insurance for the child
- The cost of child care
- Any special educational needs of the child
- The age of the child
- The legal responsibility of the parents for the support of others
- The value of services contributed by either parent
- Any public assistance paid to support the child
- Any expenses reasonably related to the mother’s pregnancy and confinement
- The cost of transportation of the child to and from visitation in certain cases
- The amount of time the child spends with each parent
- Any other necessary expenses for the benefit of the child
- The relative income of both parents
The judge may also specify whether one parent or both are responsible for the child’s medical support, including health insurance. Once established, a child support order can only be modified by going back to court and proving that changed circumstances justify a modification. The Kainen Law Group provides assistance in both modification and enforcement proceedings regarding child support.
Experience Needed to Handle Child Support Modifications
We also assist clients with child support modification requests. In Nevada, either parent can request a review and modification every three years — sooner if there has been a significant change in either parent’s financial situation.
Contact Us to Discuss Your Case With Our Devoted Las Vegas Child Support Lawyers
Whether you need help pursuing a fair child support determination or need assistance pursuing or opposing a modification to child support, call us at 702-823-4900. We deliver unwavering support to protect our clients and their children’s best interests, contact our skilled Las Vegas child support lawyers.