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Child Support

Child support is often determined by the child support guidelines, which is a formula based on a parent’s net resources that is set out in the Maine Code. A modification of the amount can generally be done if there is a significant change in a parent's income or if a certain amount of time has passed since the order was first established. Maine courts presume that the application of the child support guidelines is in the best interest of the child, but there are numerous factors a court can consider in deviating from the guidelines. Some of those factors may include:

  • the age and needs of the child

  • the ability of the parents to contribute to the support of the child

  • any financial resources available for the support of the child

  • the amount of time of possession of and access to a child

  • the amount of the obligee's net resources, including the earning potential of the obligee if the actual income of the obligee is significantly less than what the obligee could earn because the obligee is intentionally unemployed or underemployed and including an increase or decrease in the income of the obligee or income that may be attributed to the property and assets of the obligee

  • child care expenses incurred by either party in order to maintain gainful employment

  • the amount of alimony or spousal maintenance actually and currently being paid or received by a party

  • the expenses for a son or daughter for education beyond secondary school

  • whether the obligor or obligee has an automobile, housing, or other benefits furnished by his or her employer, another person, or a business entity

  • the amount of other deductions from the wage or salary income and from other compensation for personal services of the parties

  • provision for health care insurance and payment of uninsured medical expenses

  • special or extraordinary educational, health care, or other expenses of the parties or of the child

  • the cost of travel in order to exercise possession of and access to a child

  • debts or debt service assumed by either party and any other reason consistent with the best interest of the child, taking into consideration the circumstances of the parents.


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