Negotiating Child Support
Negotiating Child Support

Every child is entitled to financial support from their parents, which is the basic principle of child support. A child has the right to receive the best possible quality of life that their parents can provide, and each parent contributes to their child’s upbringing based on their income percentage. Using the percentage of each parent’s income, child support allocation becomes a fair distribution of financial responsibility. 

How is Child Support Computed

Child support uses the term “PIC,” meaning “Parental Income Combined.” Parents must compute their monthly income using the formulas provided on the calculation worksheet and instructions. If parents are paid bi-weekly, the formula is the number of hours worked per week x their hourly wage x 4.33. This computes their gross monthly wages.

Then, parents must compute their parenting percentage. The Department of Human Services provides a calculation tool to determine parenting time percentages.

The calculation sheet considers the PIC, the percentage of overnights, costs for a parent to provide medical and dental insurance coverage, childcare costs per month, and any amounts paid to support non-joint children. The calculator then computes the amount of support obligation per parent. 

Minnesota Department of Human Services Weblinks

Parenting Time Decisions

Before support can be calculated, parents must agree on a parenting schedule. The Impact Parent Education program provides parents with simple-to-use tools to negotiate a workable parenting schedule. Once parents agree on a parenting schedule, please use the tools on the DHS Minnesota website to determine child support.

What does Child Support and Collections do?

Child Support and Collections assess child support amounts, present requests for support to the judge on behalf of parents or the county, and provide collection services for a small fee.

Are parents required to pay Child Support through Child Support and Collections?

Parents can manage child support payments through direct deposits through their local bank or automatic employer withdrawals. Parents must calculate the amount of child support using the online tools on the Department of Human Services Minnesota website and file their child support agreement with the Court. This ensures parents can request assistance from Child Support and Collections if there are payment issues later.

Joint Physical Parenting and Child Support

Sometimes, parents think child support is not required if they jointly share time with their children, which is not necessarily the case. For example, child support will be calculated by the County where children reside if a parent receives medical or other assistance on behalf of a child. 

When does the child support obligation end?

There is a limit to how long child support continues, which is usually graduation or age 18 unless otherwise agreed. If a child continues to live with a parent after graduation and is attending a local community college, for example, the judge might order support to continue until the age of 20. 

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