To calculate child support payments, Mississippi uses a formula that assesses income and the number of children. However, the rules do allow for deviations under certain circumstances.
Mississippi child support calculation
Mississippi’s child support guidelines are laid out in Section 43-19-101 of the state’s code. Authorities first determine the noncustodial or paying parent’s adjusted gross income, including salary, secondary incomes, account interest and stock dividends.
Once that figure is determined, several things are deducted. These include:
• Federal, state and local taxes
• Social Security contributions
• Disability and retirement contributions
• Established child support obligations
The next thing authorities consider is the number of children. If only one child needs support, the noncustodial parent must pay 14% of their income. If two children need care, that percentage rises to 20%. The highest bracket is 26% for five or more children.
Exceptions to the rule
Mississippi makes some exceptions when calculating child support. If the paying parent’s adjusted gross income is less than $10,000, they typically do not pay as much. Conversely, if it’s over $100,000, they may be ordered to pay more. Courts also sometimes make exceptions in cases where:
• The child has extraordinary medical, educational or psychological issues that require increased support.
• The child earns income.
• Joint custody arrangements mitigate the need for payment to the other spouse.
Additionally, authorities may factor in age. For example, if a child is 17 years old at the time of the divorce, a judge may not see the need to burden the noncustodial parent with years of child support payments.
When determining child support amounts, Mississippi officials do their best to ensure that children’s needs are met without overburdening parents. Family court judges are responsible for assessing each case individually.