Child Support



As in most states, Mississippi has child support guidelines that are used to determine the amount of child support that the non-custodial parent will pay to the custodial parent. The duty to pay child support continues until the child turns 21 or is otherwise emancipated. Mississippi’s child support guidelines are some of the lowest in the nation.

If the person paying child support makes between $10,000.00 and $100,000.00 per year, the court will apply a strict formula to determine the amount of child support. These payments are typically made on a monthly basis, usually on the first or the fifteenth day of the month. The guidelines will be presumed applicable in child support awards:

Number Of Children     Percentage of Net Income
1                                                         14%
2                                                         20%
3                                                         22%
4                                                         24%
5 or more                                          26%

The guidelines apply unless the Judge makes a written or specific finding on the record that the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case. The term "adjusted gross income" in reality means one’s net income. In cases in which the adjusted gross income as defined in this section is more than $100,000.00 or less than $10,000.00, the court shall make a written finding in the record as to whether or not the application of the guidelines are reasonable.

There are other forms of child support that the Court can and will apply over and above the child support guidelines. These include things like health insurance and uncovered medical expenses, life insurance and college education. There is not a strict formula to determine which one of these additional expenses, if any, the Court will order be paid. Most chancellors agree that the non-custodial parent will have some obligation for health insurance and uncovered expenses, and if either one of the parents has a college education and they are relatively close to their child and the child is nearing college age, this is another common expense that the Judge may require a non-custodial parent to pay or share with the custodial parent. 



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