Connecticut Family
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Common child support misconceptions

by | Jul 29, 2021 | Child Support |

Unless you have paid (or received) child support before, there is a lot you might not know about how it works in Connecticut. Here are three common misconceptions about child support.

Myth #1: Nobody pays child support when parents share custody

Some people mistakenly believe that a parent can be ordered to pay child support only when the other parent has sole custody of the children. In fact, the Connecticut Child Support Guidelines state that in cases of shared child custody, the parent with the higher net weekly income should pay support to the other parent. The exact amount depends on the payor’s net income and the number of kids involved. This rule applies whenever the child spends “substantially equal time” in each parent’s custody.

Myth #2: Child support lasts until the child turns 21

In some other states, a child support order lasts until the child turns 21 years old. But in Connecticut, a standard support order only lasts until 18. The one exception is when a child turns 18 and is still in high school. Then the order will remain in place until the child graduates or turns 19, whichever comes first. However, divorced parents can agree on how to financially support their children’s college educations.

Myth #3: Child support is supposed to cover everything

It is natural to assume that the child support being paid is supposed to cover all child-rearing costs. And it is supposed to contribute to most day-to-day expenses. But it does not cover certain things, like work-related childcare, unreimbursed healthcare expenses and costs associated with extracurricular activities like sports. Usually, parents negotiate who will be responsible for these expenses as part of their divorce settlement.

Your divorce attorney will answer your more specific questions about child support so that you know the facts about it.