States use a standard worksheet to calculate support. The worksheet does not mention anywhere that if the amount owed exceeds these percentages, there should be an adjustment. You must request this in court! A judge is likely to mow over all statutes in disregard. Make sure you put in the remarks section on the worksheet that the calculated amount would exceed Federal and/or State limits and the CS amount should therefore be set at $XXX.XX (YY% of obligated parent’s income).
Federal Law regulates all child support limits in the Consumer Credit Protection Act, (CCPA), 15 USC 1673(b)(2) says:
2) The maximum part of the aggregate disposable earnings of an individual for any workweek which is subject to garnishment to enforce any order for the support of any person shall not exceed –
(A) where such individual is supporting his spouse or dependent child (other than a spouse or child with respect to whose support such order is used), 50 per centum of such individual’s disposable earnings for that week; and
(B) where such individual is not supporting such a spouse or dependent child described in clause (A), 60 per centum of such individual’s disposable earnings for that week; except that, with respect to the disposable earnings of any individual for any workweek, the 50 per centum specified in clause (A) shall be deemed to be 55 per centum and the 60 per centum specified in clause (B) shall be deemed to be 65 per centum, if and to the extent that such earnings are subject to garnishment to enforce a support order with respect to a period which is prior to the twelve-week period which ends with the beginning of such workweek.
29 CFR 531.39 specifically states that “When the payment to a third person of moneys withheld pursuant to a court order under which the withholdings exceeds that permitted by the CCPA, the excess will not be considered equivalent to payment of wages to the employee for purpose of the Fair Labor Standards Act.” In other words, that is money out of his pocket because he still has to pay you that money.
It doesn’t mean you don’t owe the money, only that they cannot garnish it. There are some pretty good examples in the links above.
If your employer or the bank take too much out of your paycheck, contact the Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division nearest you and ask how to get this corrected.
Consider dealing in cash or travelers checks. It is much harder for a creditor to seize cash he doesn’t know about than to seize a bank account that is empty except for uncleared checks that will now bounce. Money orders to pay bills are quite inexpensive.
Some other factors to keep in mind:
A minimum support order of $100/month is required regardless of circumstances.
The court can increase the basic obligation to allow for 1) Net Child Care costs; 2) Health Insurance; 3) Extraordinary medical expenses; 4) and Extraordinary Expenses.
Careless or abusive application of these provisions by the courts can result in support orders that exceed the maximum garnishable amount (50% of net income or minimum wage times 30 hours) by state law.
State law allows for the state to refuse to lower child support orders if a party becomes unemployed or underemployed.[/protected]