Is Overtime or Bonus Pay Considered for Texas Child Support?
Whether it’s by way of a divorce filing, paternity case, or stand-alone child custody proceeding, parents (and courts) want to ensure the best interests of children will be met, and that they’ll have the needed financial support to make that possible.
While calculating child support is a matter which can vary from case to case, it is viewed as an undeniable obligation for any parent – meaning a parent owes child support regardless of whether they see their children or not.
Under the Texas Family Code, there’s a formula used to determine the amount of support a parent is obligated to pay for their child, and it calculates support amounts based on more than employment income alone.
Net Income Calculation
Generally, the child support formula is a Net Income Calculation which computes the average net resources of the parent paying support by subtracting Social Security taxes, income tax (federal), union fees, health insurance, and other related liabilities from gross income.
Under Texas law, gross income includes not only salary but also bonus and overtime pay. It generally includes income from:
- Salary, overtime & bonus pay;
- Commissions/cash tips
- Interest or dividends
- Rental/investment income
- Royalties/oil and gas mineral interests
- Trust or retirement income
- Gifts, prizes, and any spousal support from a previous marriage
The result of subtracting taxes and liabilities from gross income (the parent’s annual net income) is divided by 12 to obtain an average figure for net monthly income. The figure is then multiplied by a percentage which is determined by the number of children receiving support. In Texas, that equates to:
- 1 child – 20%
- 2 children – 25%
- 3 children – 30%
- 4 children – 35%
- 5 children – 40%
- 6 or children – amount equal or greater than amount for 5 children
Using this formula, a parent who earns $2,000 per month (net monthly income) for two children would pay $500 per month in child support.
Under the Texas Family Code, child support applies up to the first $8,500 in net monthly income (after which the court may award additional support if warranted and within the child’s “proven needs”). Additionally, parents can ask the court for adjustments if they believe guidelines are too high or low for their given circumstances, including job loss or loss of bonuses/overtime.
Questions About Texas Family Law? Call (713) 909-7323
Calculating child support is often just one component of a larger family law matter, whether it be a divorce, child custody case, or modification/enforcement matter. At Hendershot, Cannon & Hisey, P.C., our legal team is available to help clients across Harris County and beyond address their unique family law concerns. Call (713) 909-7323 or contact us online to learn more about your options.