Mauldin & Bennett, PLLC
320 S. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103
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Child Support Guide
The courts use the official Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines to determine the amount of child support. The Guidelines are designed to be in the best interests of the child and are followed in each case unless the parents agreed to a child support amount on their own or the court finds the guidelines to be unjust in a particular situation. Child support computation forms are available from the clerk of the court and computation calculators for the computation of Oklahoma child support are found in abundance online.
Determination of the Amount of Oklahoma Child Support
Both parents are expected to contribute to the support of their children. The Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines base the amount of support on the combined gross income of both parties. Self-employed parties use gross income calculated as ordinary receipts minus ordinary and necessary expenses for his or her business operations.
Custody and Determination of Each Party’s Responsibility with Regard to Oklahoma Child Support
The custodial parent is responsible to the best of his or her ability to provide for the education and support of the child. If the custodial parent’s income is insufficient to provide for the education and support of the child, the courts consider the income and means of each parent and the property and assets of each parent. If warranted, the court may order a portion of the non-custodial parent’s property to be set aside for the custodial parent to use for the child.
Where shared parenting time has been ordered by a district court or agreed to by the parents, the base monthly obligation shall be adjusted. “Shared parenting time” means that each parent has physical custody of the child or children overnight for more than 120 nights each year.
In cases of split custody, where each parent is awarded custody of at least one of their natural or legally adopted children, the child support obligation for each parent shall be calculated by application of the child support guidelines for each custodial arrangement. The parent with the larger child support obligation shall pay the difference between the two amounts to the parent with the smaller child support obligation.
Medical and dental insurance premiums for the child shall be allocated between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross income and shall be added to the base of the child support obligation.
Reasonable and necessary uninsured health expenses of the child incurred by either parent may be allocated in the same proportion as the parents’ adjusted gross income.
Transportation expenses of a child between the homes of the parents may be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross income.
- Interpreted From Section §43-118 of the Oklahoma Statutes.
Child Support after 18 Years of Age
When the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school, whichever occurs last, or if the child marries, child support is no longer required.
However, support may continue after the age of 18 if:
- The child has a mental or physical disability and is not capable of self-support; and
- Said disability exists or is known to exist on or before the child’s 18th birthday
- Interpreted From Sections §43-112 and 43-112.1a of the Oklahoma Statutes.
Child Support and Secondary Education Expenses
Most state courts recognize the need for children to have a college education and the issue is allowed to be included in settlement negotiations as long as the supporting language of the agreement is strong and the expected costs to a parent are not excessive.
In Oklahoma, however, there is no statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement so it is important to include the provision in the settlement negotiations.
Immediate Income Withholding
In all child support cases arising out of an action for divorce, paternity or other proceeding in which services are not being provided under the state’s child support plan, the district court shall order the wage of the obligor subject to immediate income assignment, regardless of whether support payments by such parent are in arrears, unless:
- One of the parties demonstrates and the district court finds there is good cause not to require immediate income withholding; or
- A written agreement is reached between the parties that provides for an alternative arrangement.
The obligated party may execute a voluntary income assignment at any time.
- Interpreted From Section §43-115 of the Oklahoma Statutes.
If you have questions regarding the Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines and its application to you and your family, please feel free to give our Tulsa child support attorneys a call at 918.557.1124. You can reach the Mauldin & Bennett, PLLC or fill out and submit the contact form and we will be happy to contact you.