Texas' Child Support Interactive (CSI) works with courts and both parents to set child support payment amounts. Various financial items such as wages and living expenses are factored into child support payments. Worksheet calculators and understanding the specific financial items the state uses to set payment amounts allow parents to estimate their child support payments in advance of receiving a court order.

1. Total the average monthly income that you receive as the noncustodial parent. Wages received from employers and monies earned from self-employment work are examples of items that are factored into this number.
2. Deduct payments that are taken out of your income for social security. Keep copies of self-employment taxes (Medicare and social security) you paid directly to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) if you are self-employed. Texas courts might ask you to show proof that the social security payments were paid.
3. Add the total amount of federal income taxes and union dues that are deducted from your income. Noncustodial parents who live outside Texas should also deduct the amount of state tax that they have deducted from their income, as Texas does not have state income tax.
4. List the average amount of money that you spend to provide health care for the child. If you work for an employer and pay health care premiums for the child and yourself out of your payroll check, calculate the difference between the cost of health insurance for one person versus the cost of health insurance for yourself plus the child to arrive at this figure.
5. Subtract the total amount of expenses that are deducted from your income (i.e., health care for the child, union dues, federal and state taxes). This equals your total available monthly income. According to the "Texas Child Support Calculator," if you only have one minor child, the amount of support you owe would equal 20 percent of your total available monthly income. For example, if your available monthly income was $9,413, you would owe 20 percent of this amount for child support ($1,882.60) each month. The percentage that you owe decreases when the number of minor children you must support increases. For example, if you had seven children to support and your monthly net income was $9,413, you would owe 40 percent of this amount for child support for all seven child combined, or $3,765.20 a month.


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