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How is child support determined in Massachusetts?

One of the main divorce legal issues that comes up when parents in Massachusetts divorce is the issue of child support. Child support is important for many reasons, so it is important to understand what guidelines Massachusetts follows when determining how much child support to award.

Why is paying child support important?

Child support is ultimately meant to benefit the child. Both parents are responsible for meeting the child’s financial needs. This goes beyond the basics of food, shelter and clothing. Children are often involved in extracurricular activities, will have school-related expenses, and entertainment expenses. Ultimately, child support ensures that both parents play a role in providing the child with a well-rounded childhood.

What child support guidelines does Massachusetts follow?

Massachusetts has a set of support guidelines, and through the use of a mathematical computation, will arrive at an appropriate amount of support. Some factors that are included in this calculation includes:

  • Each parent’s income
  • Child care expenses
  • Medical insurance expenses
  • The living arrangements of the child; and
  • Any Social Security benefits the child may be receiving

Keep in mind that this list is not all-exhaustive. Calculating child support in Massachusetts is somewhat complicated.

Seek help if you need to apply for child support or are being asked to pay child support

Paying child support is important in ensuring the child’s needs are met. Ultimately, it is in the child’s best interests that an appropriate amount of benefits is paid in full and on time. If you want to request child support payments, modify an existing order for payments, or if you are being asked to pay child support it is important to seek the help necessary to understand your rights and obligations. This post does not provide legal advice on any specific child support case or family law matters in general, so it is important to discuss your questions and concerns with a Massachusetts family law attorney.



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