You have kids and you’re getting divorced.
If that’s your situation, let me start by saying I’m sorry you’re going through this. Divorce is not easy, especially for children. The worries are unavoidable. Worries about relationships, about housing, about money.
That last one is especially relevant to moms who will have their kids the majority of the time. How do they pay for normal things now that a good part of the family income is gone?
One answer to that question is child support. Child support is designed to pay for everyday costs for your kids. Clothes, food, household stuff, etc.
How Child Support Works in a Nutshell
The amount of child support you receive depends on a couple things.
First, it depends on your and your soon-to-be-ex’s gross monthly incomes (i.e., the amount you make before taking out taxes).
Second, it depends on the number of parent-time overnights you share with your ex.
More or less it works like this. The more your soon-to-be-ex makes, the more he’ll pay. Also, the closer to 50/50 parent-time you share, the less you’ll receive in child support.
How Child Support Works with 50/50 Custody
Like I wrote above, the closer you get to 50/50, the less you’ll receive in child support.
Honestly, you’ll need a pretty big income difference to get much of anything at 50/50.
For example, if a mom makes $36,000 per year ($3000 per month) and her husband makes $100,000 per year ($8333 per month), and they share 50/50 custody, mom would get $273 per month in child support.
If, by contrast, mom had primary physical custody, she’d receive $820 per month in child support.
(You can run your own numbers here.)
In the end, you need to do what’s best for your kids. If that means 50/50 custody, then go with it. Keep in mind, however, that you won’t get much child support.