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Indiana Child Support Guidelines: Ensuring Financial Stability for Your Children

Indiana Child Support Guidelines: An Overview of What You Need to Know

As a parent, providing child support is an important aspect of ensuring the well-being of your child. In Indiana, the amount of child support to be paid is determined using guidelines that follow an income shares model.

The guidelines ensure that the appropriate standard of support is given while valuing equitable treatment and efficiency in the process. In this article, we take a closer look at how Indiana child support guidelines work, how child support is calculated, and the tools available to assist with calculating child support.

Functions of Indiana Child Support Guidelines

The Indiana Child Support Guidelines are put in place to create a system for making child support orders that treat every family equitably. The guidelines act as a framework that provides the appropriate standard of support for children while maintaining the financial stability of parents.

It also ensures efficient handling of cases by judges and courts. At its core, the Indiana Child Support Guidelines follow an income shares model that determines the amount of child support based on parental income.

This model has been widely adopted and endorsed by the National Center for State Courts, which is involved in administering the nationwide program. The model ensures that the child receives the same proportion of parental income that they would have received had the parents stayed together.

Income Shares Model

The income shares model used in Indiana Child Support Guidelines is based on the premise that both parents must contribute to the support of their children. The model takes into consideration the income of both parents and the estimated amount of money they would spend on the child if they were still married.

The parental income used in the calculation of child support includes any source of gross income from work, including wages, salaries, overtime pay, tips, bonuses, commissions, and self-employment income. Other sources of income such as rent, royalties, and dividends are also included in determining parental income.

The child support calculation takes into account the number of dependents and any contributions made towards healthcare, disability insurance, or retirement savings. The income shares model used in Indiana considers the amount of time each parent spends with the child.

If one parent has primary custody, the non-custodial parent may be required to pay child support. On the other hand, if both parents share custody time equally, the parent with the higher income may be required to pay child support.

Child Support Calculator and Live Support

The Indiana Department of Child Services provides a child support calculator tool on its website. The child support calculator helps parents estimate the appropriate child support amount based on their income and the number of children involved.

The calculator takes into account all expenses related to the child’s physical, medical, and educational needs. Parents can also use the Child Support Interactive (CSI) system to calculate child support online.

The CSI system is available twenty-four hours a day, and parents can access it at their convenience. In addition to providing support calculations, the system also provides information on court orders, payment history, and case status.

For live support, parents can reach out to the Indiana Support Enforcement Division. The division provides a variety of services to parents, including help with establishing paternity, locating non-custodial parents, and enforcing support orders.

Parents can use the division’s website or hotline to get in touch with representatives. How is Child Support Calculated in Indiana?

The Indiana Child Support Worksheet is used to calculate child support. The worksheet is a standardized form used by the court to calculate the appropriate amount of child support.

The worksheet considers the gross weekly income of the parents and any expenses related to the child’s needs. When calculating child support, the gross weekly income of both parents is taken into account.

Gross income includes income from all sources such as wages, salaries, tips, royalties, bonuses, and commissions. Other sources such as rental income and investment dividends are also included.

Once the gross income is calculated, allowable deductions are taken into account. These include federal and state taxes, social security payments, and other deductions such as union dues or medical expenses.

After deductions, the net income is used to calculate the child support amount. The child support expenses considered in the worksheet include food, housing, clothing, transportation, and medical expenses.

Educational expenses such as private school or college costs may also be included. Other optional expenses such as extracurricular activities, travel, and summer camps may also be considered.


Providing child support is an important responsibility for parents. The Indiana Child Support Guidelines provide a framework that ensures equitable treatment of families and efficiency in handling cases.

The income shares model used in Indiana considers parental income and expenses related to the child’s needs. By utilizing the child support calculator and live support systems, parents can determine the appropriate amount of child support and access additional services to ensure the financial stability of their family.

What Determines Child Support in Indiana? Child support is a necessary financial obligation that parents, by law, must provide for their children.

In Indiana, determining child support is crucial in maintaining the financial stability of the child. The Indiana Child Support Guidelines provide clear steps for determining the appropriate child support amount based on the percentage share of parental income and other expenses.

However, there are times when deviation from the guidelines may be necessary due to specific circumstances. In this article, we take an in-depth look at how child support is determined in Indiana and the different circumstances where deviations may apply.

Steps to Determine Child Support

The Indiana Child Support Guidelines follow an income shares model that takes into account both parents’ income and how much they would have spent if they were still together. The primary factors involved in calculating child support in Indiana include:


Percentage share of parental income This is the amount estimated that each parent should contribute to the child’s expenses based on their combined income. 2.

Income support tables The income support tables used in Indiana are based on the number of children and the combined income of both parents. These tables provide a range of child support amounts that can be used as a basis for determining the amount of child support to be paid.

3. Expenses related to the child’s needs These expenses include things like daycare, medical expenses, education, and extracurricular activities.

4. Adjusted income This is the amount of income left after taxes and other deductions are taken out.

5. Income shares Finally, Indiana calculates the amount of child support based on the income shares of both parents.

Deviation from Guidelines

There are certain circumstances where deviating from the Indiana Child Support Guidelines may be necessary. Deviation refers to situations where the calculated amount of child support may not be appropriate or workable based on specific circumstances.

The judge on the case will usually make the final determination based on the specific facts and circumstances of each case. Some factors that may result in a deviation from the guidelines include:


Significant travel expenses In cases where a parent spends a significant amount of time traveling to visit the child, the court may adjust the child support amount to account for this extra expense. 2.

Long-distance commute expenses Similar to significant travel expenses, cases where one parent has a long-distance commute to work may require an adjustment in child support to ensure the parent can meet both their own expenses and the child’s needs. 3.

Elderly parent support If the parent has an elderly parent to care for, the court may consider their expenses when determining child support. 4.

Military housing In cases where a military parent lives in a government housing facility, the court may take this into consideration when calculating their income. 5.

Extraordinary expenses The court may also deviate from the guidelines if the child requires extraordinary expenses for medical care not covered by insurance, education, or other important expenses. 6.

School clothes The court may also deviate from the guidelines for expenses related to required school uniforms or other necessary clothing needs. How to Request Child Support Modification in Indiana?

Requests for modifications to child support can be made in Indiana when there is a substantial and continuing change in circumstances. The court will consider whether the change in circumstances justifies revisiting the child support agreement.

There are two ways to modify a child support agreement in Indiana:

1. Modifying child support with agreement If both parents agree to modify the child support agreement, then they can file a form with the court outlining the changes they agree on.

2. Modifying child support without agreement If one parent seeks a modification to the child support agreement and the other parent does not agree, then they can file a form with the court.

The county guidelines will then be used to determine the appropriate amount.

Lowering Child Support Obligation

Child support obligation may be lowered in Indiana based on several factors. These factors include:


Substantial and continuing circumstances A substantial and continuing change in circumstances that results in a 20% difference in child support calculations may justify a modification. 2.

Change in parental time Significant changes in the amount of time spent with the child by either parent may also justify a modification. 3.

Additional children If the parent has another child with someone else, the court may adjust the amount of child support being paid. In summary, child support is a necessary financial obligation that cannot be ignored.

Understanding how child support is determined and when deviation from guidelines may be permissible can help parents feel more confident in navigating their financial obligations to their children. If circumstances change, parents may also have the option to request modifications to their child support arrangements with or without the agreement of the other parent.

What Happens if You Do Not Pay Child Support in Indiana? Child support is a crucial financial obligation that parents must fulfill for the well-being of their children.

Failure to pay child support can have serious consequences in Indiana. The state takes child support enforcement seriously to ensure that children receive the financial support they deserve.

In this article, we will explore the potential consequences of not paying child support in Indiana and the steps taken to enforce payments.

Accessing Paternity Establishment Services

Establishing paternity is an essential step in determining child support obligations. The county prosecutors’ Title IV-D office provides services to establish paternity.

If paternity is in question and needs to be determined, the Title IV-D office can assist by conducting a paternity test. Once paternity is established, the court can proceed with establishing child support.

Reporting Failure to Meet Financial Obligations

If a parent fails to meet their child support obligations, the custodial parent can report it to the local County Child Support office. The office will take enforcement action to ensure compliance.

It’s important to note that each county has its own procedures, but common enforcement actions include:

1. Direct Deposit to collect child support payments from the noncustodial parent’s income.

2. MasterCard payment option, which allows the child support payments to be loaded onto a card that can be used like a debit card.

Being Held in Contempt and Consequences

If a noncustodial parent consistently fails to comply with child support obligations, they may be held in contempt of court. The custodial parent can request the court to hold a hearing to explain the reasons for nonpayment.

If the parent is found to be in willful violation, there are several consequences that can be enforced, including:

1. Job-related consequences The court may require the parent to seek employment or participate in a job training program to ensure they have the means to meet their child support obligations.

2. Community service The court may order the nonpaying parent to perform community service as a form of punishment and to emphasize the importance of meeting their financial obligations.

3. License suspension The court has the authority to suspend the nonpaying parent’s driver’s license, occupational license, or professional license until child support payments are made.

4. Income withholding Income withholding orders may be issued to the noncustodial parent’s employer, requiring them to withhold a portion of the parent’s income for child support purposes.

5. Tax intercept Federal and state tax refunds can be intercepted and applied towards child support debts.

6. Motor vehicle and property liens The court may also place liens on the nonpaying parent’s motor vehicles or property as a means of securing past-due child support payments.

Jail Time and Federal Charges

Failure to adhere to child support obligations in Indiana can have serious consequences, ranging from misdemeanor charges to felony charges. Class D felony charges may be brought against a parent who accrues over $15,000 in unpaid child support.

Class C felony charges may be pursued if the amount exceeds $15,000 and the parent has previously been convicted of neglect of a dependent or nonsupport of a child. In some cases, a parent may be ordered to serve jail time for nonpayment of child support.

However, imprisonment is typically seen as a last resort and is most commonly used when all other enforcement methods have failed. It is important to note that even during incarceration, the parent’s child support obligations continue to accrue.

Statute of Limitations and When Child Support Ends in Indiana

Enforcement orders and judgments for child support obligations have specific time limitations in Indiana. Generally, an enforcement order or judgment is valid for 10 years.

However, if the child support debt remains unpaid during this period, the obligation can be extended for an additional 10 years. Child support obligations generally end when the child reaches the age of 19 in Indiana.

However, there are several circumstances in which child support may cease before reaching this age:

1. Emancipation If the child becomes emancipated by marrying, joining the active military service, or being declared legally emancipated by the court.

2. Court order A court may terminate child support if it determines that the child is financially independent and no longer requires support.

3. Incapacitated child If the child has a permanent physical or mental disability that renders them unable to support themselves, child support may continue beyond the age of 19.

In conclusion, paying child support is not optional in Indiana. Failing to meet one’s financial obligations may result in severe consequences, including legal action, contempt of court charges, and even jail time.

It is important for parents to understand their responsibilities and make child support payments on time to ensure the well-being of their children. In conclusion, it is crucial to fulfill child support obligations in Indiana to ensure the financial well-being of children.

Failing to pay child support can lead to various enforcement actions, including job-related consequences, license suspensions, and even imprisonment. County offices, paternity establishment services, and the court play significant roles in enforcing child support payments.

Understanding the consequences of nonpayment and the available resources for establishing and modifying child support is essential. Remember, providing consistent support to your children is not just a legal obligation but also a way to show your love and commitment to their well-being.

Let us strive to fulfill our responsibilities and prioritize the financial stability of our children.

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