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Different ways to calculate child support in Wisconsin

Check out our simple-to-use Wisconsin Child Support Calculator here.

When going through a divorce in Wisconsin, and where there are minor children involved, there are two different formulas for calculating child support. Many times, we see custody battles that are not really custody battles at all, but rather disguised child support concerns; more time, equals less pay. Today’s blog, discusses the two formulas for calculating child support in the state department of Wisconsin.

1. Traditional primary placement.  Where one parent has primary placement of the children, defined as having the children 75% of the time, counted as overnights, the non-custodial parent pays a percentage of their gross monthly income for the support of the children; 17% for 1 child; 25% for 2 children;  29% for 3 children; 31% for 4 children, with a cap at 34%.

2. Shared and equal placement For parents who have shared or equal placement, generally defined as having overnight placement anywhere from 26% of the time to 50%, there is a different formula that calculates child support that compares both parties’ gross monthly income and includes in the formula the percentage of time both parents spend with the children. The net result is usually an amount in support that falls significantly from the traditional percentage guidelines when one parent has primary placement.

This is why many times we are suspicious as divorce lawyers of the true motivation behind a parent asking for 50/50 placement (usually the father), and the other parent (usually the mother) advocating they want primary placement. When the parents are counting overnights using their fingers, the wheels are spinning on money issues, not on coming up with the best schedule that is in the children’s best interest.

If you have questions on how child support is calculated in the State of Wisconsin, contact the experienced lawyers at karp & Iancu, S.C. today for a free consultation, with offices conveniently located both on the west side and east side of Milwaukee.

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