Simon Mediation - Dan Simon, M.A., J.D.

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Dan Simon, M.A., J.D.

How Do I Calculate Child Support in Minnesota?

It’s really up to you and your co-parent.  Yes, really.  This is different from how divorce lawyers see it, but the truth is, as long as you and your co-parent are happy with your agreement, it is completely up to the two of you (unless the person receiving child support is on public assistance, in which case the county will likely seek reimbursement from the other parent).  And if you or your co-parent are not happy with your agreement, the law isn’t very helpful, because there are so many ways for you to take out your dissatisfaction on the other parent, including by not paying, or by taking each other to court.  So the real key is to figure out how to work with your co-parent toward something you’re both happy with.  Some people find it helpful to refer to the Minnesota Child Support Calculator, available here: childsupportcalculator.dhs.state.mn.us/Calculator.aspx . But it’s always possible to argue about just how that calculation should be done and how your case calls for a deviation from it.  So the important thing is that you and your co-parent work together to find a plan acceptable to the two of you.  The Minnesota Child Support Guidelines consider some of the factors that seem relevant to most people:  how much each parent earns, and how much time the kids spend with each parent.  But the guidelines don’t take into consideration other unique aspects of your situation.  That’s why, if the calculator doesn’t make sense to you, you shoud feel free to explore other possibilities with your co-parent.