Georgia child support deviations - Generally
In Georgia, child support is calculated using both the mother’s and the father’s incomes. O.C.G.A. §19-6-15. Generally, the Court determines the annual gross incomes of both parties (or imputes what it believes the income should be based upon a party’s education and work experience) and runs those numbers through a child support calculator to determine the proper amount of child support. The amount of child support is presumptive and may be rebutted by either party, and court may deviate from the amount determined by the child support calculator. OCGA §19-6-15(i)(1)(A).
In deviating, the court must give primary consideration to the best interest of the child(ren) for whom support is being determined. Id. The court must specifically find “that an amount of child support other than the amount calculated is reasonably necessary to provide for the needs of the child for whom child support is being determined.” OCGA §19-6-15 (i)(1)(B). In addition, no deviation shall be made “which seriously impairs the ability of the custodial parent to maintain minimally adequate housing, food, and clothing for the child being supported by the order and to provide other basic necessities.” OCGA §19-6-15 (i)(1)(C).
There are eleven deviation categories, all of which will be explained further in future blogs: high income; low income; other health related insurance; life insurance; child and dependent care tax credit; travel expenses; alimony; mortgage; permanency plan or foster care plan; extraordinary expenses; parenting time; and nonspecific deviation.