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How is child support determined in Illinois?

When you choose to seek a divorce from your spouse in Bloomington, one of the first important points to enter your mind will likely by how you will support your children. The deterioration of your relationship with your spouse has little bearing on your feelings towards your children, so your willingness to continue to provide for them is likely not an issue. Having said that, you also do not want to be left having to bear the entire burden of doing so if it is not necessary. This speculation all leads to one simple question: how does the state determine child support? 

A general overview of the process is provided in Section 5-505 of Illinois' Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. According to this law, child support determinations are made as follows: 

  • Yours and your ex-spouse's monthly net income is determined
  • Those two amounts are combined to determine a total monthly household income
  • An appropriate amount is selected from the state's schedule of basic child support obligations based on the number of children you share and your total monthly household income
  • Your share of that amount is determined based on your contribution to the total monthly household income

For example, say you and your ex-spouse make a combined $6,000, and the two of you have three kids together. The state's schedule of basic child support obligations mandates that $1889 be paid for the support of your children. If you contribute 65 percent of your total monthly household income, then you are to pay 65 percent of that amount (which comes out to $1,227.85). 

An important point to remember about child support is that health insurance, school fees and other expenses related to your kids' upbringing are included in that amount. Thus, any amount paid for those expenses may be deducted from your monthly payment total. 

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