How is child support determined?

Child support is determined by statewide child support guidelines. The Kansas Child Support Guidelines are available at the Kansas Supreme Court website.

Child support is usually paid by the “non-primary-residential” parent to the “primary-residential” parent; however, even if the child is with both parents an equal amount of time, the court may order that one parent pay the other some amount of child support. Child support is a duty of both parents to support their child according to their respective incomes and abilities. Child support cannot be “bargained away” by agreement with the other parent. Child support is the child’s right to be supported by the child’s parents. The courts will protect the child’s right even if the parents believe there should not be any child support paid between them.

Child support is determined by a number of factors including: the age of the child, the number of children to be supported, the parents’ incomes, health insurance premiums, child care costs, special needs expenses for a disabled child and other factors. The child support determined under the guidelines is presumed correct and will be the child support order unless the court independently finds that other provisions are more in the child’s best interests.

Child support is usually paid until the child reaches the age of majority (which is 18 years of age or June 30 if the child’s 18th birthday occurs while the child is attending high school). The obligation to pay child support may be extended beyond the child’s majority by agreement between the parties, but cannot be imposed by the Court past majority. If child support was originally ordered by another state, the time that child support is required is determined by that state’s laws rather than the law of any state that may later modify any child support order.