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Missouri child support: Things you should know

37197042_S.jpgChild support stands as a highly contested area of family law. The popular stereotype of child support is that neither part is happy with it. Every movie or television show shows the husband who thinks he pays too much or the mother who wants her husband to spare some more for the children. Although this is a stereotype, many divorce couple actually feel this way.

Even though both parties may not be happy with the child support order, understanding how the courts make this determination can help make the payments a bit more bearable. According to Missouri law, non-custodial parents are expected to a minimum payment of $50 a month. For every addition $50 in the parents' combined adjusted gross income, the payment is increased. This payment is determined by many different variables.

Salaries, retirement benefits, capital gains, bonuses: gross income can include any of these things. It's probably easier to list the things that are not included in gross income: Medicaid benefits, food stamps, general assistance benefits, TANF payments, SSI Benefits and child support that is received for other children. All other types of income will add to the combined gross income, and signal a larger child support payment for the non-custodial parent.

Child payments can seem much higher than expected due to the increase for each additional child. Courts do not set child support without careful consideration. The legal process behind the support orders is extensive, and will include proof of income from both parents before child support is determined.

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