In almost all cases, child support is set based on formulas and tables created by the South Carolina Department of Social Services, which are called the “Child Support Guidelines.”  A copy of the current child support guidelines can be downloaded here: South Carolina Child Support Guidelines (2014 edition).

Support is based on a number of factors: prior support obligation; the number of children being supported; the income (or earning capacities) of both parents; the percentage of combined income each parent has; the number of other children each parent has living in their own home; the work related day care expenses either party has for the child or children and the health insurance expenses either party has for the child or children.

In cases where each party has custody of one or more of their children the “split custody” guidelines will apply. In cases in which each party has the children at least 110 overnights, the “shared custody” guidelines may be applied.  See S.C. Code Regs. § 114-4730.

“[O]rders for child support run until the child turns eighteen years of age or until the child is married or becomes self-supporting, as determined by the court, whichever occurs first, or past the age of eighteen years if the child is enrolled and still attending high school, not to exceed high school graduation or the end of the school year after the child reaches nineteen years of age, whichever is later; or in accordance with a preexisting agreement or order to provide for child support past the age of eighteen years; or in the discretion of the court, to provide for child support past age eighteen when there are physical or mental disabilities of the child or other exceptional circumstances that warrant the continuation of child support beyond age eighteen for as long as the physical or mental disabilities or exceptional circumstances continue.” S.C. Code § 63-3-530(17)

The basis dispute in setting child support is often the dispute over who should have custody and whether the other parent should have 109 (or more) overnights with the child. Disputes over income or earning capacity are also common. However, if the information regarding the child support factors is not in dispute, application of the child support guidelines is simple and the setting of child support will generally not become contested.

In circumstances where the supporting parent does not pay child support promptly, he or she can be ordered to pay via wage withholding and/or through the family courts (which then keep a payment record and will seek enforcement if the supporting parent does not pay child support as ordered).

South Carolina Department of Social Services has a website in which various child support scenarios can be examined by inputting information relevant to the child support factors. The child support figures generated are generally off by a few dollars from the actual guideline calculation, but provide a rough estimate of the amount of child support that would be awarded if the parties agree (or the court finds) the inputted information is accurate.

If you desire to obtain child support, modify child support, or defend a child support action, you are welcome to click here to contact Mr. Forman’s office.

For more information on child support:

Using Financial Records in Support Cases

Contingency Fees and Interest in Collecting Back Child Support and Alimony

Creating or Defeating South Carolina Jurisdiction in Multi-state Custody or Support Cases

After eight years South Carolina finally updates its child support guidelines

Put Mr. Forman’s experience, knowledge, and dedication to your service for any of your South Carolina family law needs.

Recent Blog Posts

The Folly of Fighting Child Protective Services after a Merits Finding

Early in my career, when family court attorneys were still being court appointed to represent indigent parents in abuse and neglect proceedings, I

[ + ] Read More

Court of Appeals determines homosexual couples could not enter common law marriage prior to the Condon case

A July 1, 2020, Court of Appeals opinion in Swicegood v. Thomson determined that South Carolina code prohibited homosexual couples from forming the

[ + ] Read More

College related child care is not work-related child care for the purpose of setting child support

There are a number of South Carolina family court opinions that are of narrow relevance but of significant importance when relevant. Such cases

[ + ] Read More