Part 2: Is Illinois due for child support reform?

Today’s post will continue on the topic covered in our post earlier this week. We were discussing the model or system used in Illinois when calculating child support payments after parents choose to divorce or separate. Although there is some agreement among lawmakers that Illinois should change to an income shared model as opposed to its current system of “percentage of obligatory net income,” lawmakers are still trying to draft legislation to present to the General Assembly.

This legislation was actually expected last spring, but what appears to be at issue are the specifics of the formula used to factor in parenting time, said a consultant with Illinois Fathers, an organization that is actively involved in fathers’ rights issues and family law reform. One question or issue seems to be whether to use a net or gross income model when reviewing a parent’s income. The other issue is determining just how much time a parent should spend with a child before it can be factored into the child support equation.

One proposal is that a non-custodial parent should have at least 40 percent of overnight time with their child. But the chairman of the Children’s Rights Council of Illinois disagrees with that proposal stating the goal should really be ensuring the child is properly supported when he or she is with either parent. This percentage approach does not consider the fixed costs associated with providing a home, clothing and utilities whether you have your child four nights per week or three, he said.

What do you think Illinois, is our state due for an update on our child support system?

Source: The DePaulia, “Seeking child support reform in Illinois,” Callie Bretthauer, Feb. 3, 2013

Our Illinois family law firm has offices in Edwardsville and Belleville to help families in transition with divorce, child custody and child support issues.

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