Decatur Family Law and Probate Attorney

How are child support payments calculated?

On Behalf of | Dec 21, 2023 | Divorce

Child support payments provide for your child’s basic needs, such as clothing, housing, medical care and educational expenses. In Texas, the child support guidelines ensure the child receives enough financial support from each parent.

Calculating child support

The noncustodial parent is the parent who does not have primary custody of the child. The court will review how much income that parent earns, which includes hourly wages or salary, self-employment income, bonuses and other income. The noncustodial parent will pay a percentage of that income which increases depending on how many children the parent has.

In addition to the basic child support rate, the parent may also be responsible for paying for health insurance, daycare costs, and other similar expenses. The court will issue a child support order outlining the paying parent’s obligations.


If the noncustodial parent does not pay child support, there are several options to enforce the order. The court can issue an order to withhold the parent’s income, which will remove the child support payments from their paycheck or other income directly. If they are expecting a tax refund, that can be intercepted too.

The court may also issue a fine or can place a lien on the parent’s property. Once the property is sold, the proceeds will go to the receiving parent. The paying parent’s driver’s license can also be suspended, as well as any professional licenses they hold. Non-payment of child support can negatively affect their credit score.

If the noncustodial parent is unable to pay child support because of a change in income that is not within their control, like a job loss for example, they can request a modification.