When you've filled in the boxes and clicked on the calculate button, you'll get a rough estimate of the amount of child support that the noncustodial parent will have to pay to the custodial parent. You may also use the official New York Child Support Calculator, but it is only adjusted for FICA and city taxes.
Learn more about how child support is calculated in New York, including what can be subtracted from gross income, additional expenses that may be added to the basic child support obligation, and application of the guideline when parents have high incomes.
The amount of child support calculated under New York's child support guidelines won't necessarily apply in every situation. The state presumes that's the correct amount. But you may argue that a different amount would be appropriate in your situation. Whether you and the child's other parent have agreed on a support amount that departs from the guideline or a judge makes that decision for you, the judge will have to find that the noncustodial parent's share of the basic child support obligation under the guideline would be unjust or inappropriate. When making that decision, the judge must consider a number of factors spelled out in the law, including
(N.Y. Dom. Rel. Law § 240(1-b)(f) (2022).)
Typically, you'll apply for child support as part of the process of filing for divorce in New York. Whenever you have children under the age of 21, you must include a child support worksheet along with your other divorce paperwork.
If you aren't married to your child's other parent, you may get help with requesting support by applying for child support services from New York's Division of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE).
If needed, the DCSE may also help with establishing the child's legal paternity (or parentage) and locating absent parents.
If you're having trouble collecting child support, you can get help from the local Child Support Enforcement Unit (CSEU) (called the Office of Child Support Services in New York City). The office can collect support payments through its Support Collection Unit and then send the money to you.
And if the other parent is behind on payments, the DCSE can help enforce the child support order by using a variety of methods, including:
Either parent may request a modification of child support in New York, if they can show one of the following:
(N.Y. Dom. Rel. Law § 236, Part B(7)(d) (2022).)
You may ask the DCSE for help with filing a modification request. You may also request a review of your support order to see if it qualifies for a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).