I was recently ordered to pay child support at a percentage rate of 20% of my earnings, which I have no problem with.
But at the closing of the hearing, the judge decided to apply retroactive child support and add it to the original amount which would increase my weekly payment to 26%. Is this legal?
In the state I practice in (Illinois), a judge may order retroactive child support. The retroactive amount may be imposed back to the date that the pleading requesting support was filed.
The retroactive amount may be paid off in a lump sum, other agreed payment plan, or by adding the retroactive amount to the future payments, which appears to be what was ordered in your case.
When the retroactive amount is added to the future payments, the “regular” child support amount is typically increased 20% until the retroactive amount is paid off. For example, if $400 in retroactive support is ordered, this amount would be paid off at $80 per month for five months.
Therefore, until the retroactive child support amount is paid off, your child support obligation will be higher than 20% of your net income. However, this increased amount will only remain in effect until the retroactive support is paid off.
If you have questions about the specific amount of support that was ordered in your case, you should contact a domestic litigation attorney licensed in your area to review your child support order.
Cordell & Cordell has men’s divorce lawyers across the country, including Illinois.
Erin Brockhoff is an Associate Attorney in the Belleville, IL office of Cordell & Cordell where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Brockhoff is licensed in the state of Illinois, and the Southern and Northern Districts of Illinois. Ms. Brockhoff received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Psychology, magna cum laude, from Miami University. She received her Juris Doctor from the Chicago-Kent College of Law, where she was a member of the Moot Court Honor Society.