Kevin Qualls Family Law
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Fringe benefits can be figured in to the child support

This blog has on previous occasions discussed how California applies a specific formula to determine how much each parent owes toward child support. Application of this formula depends heavily on each parent's income, and for good reason. How much each parent makes will translate in to how much he or she can afford in child support. The parents' income is also a good measure of how much support a child will need in order to maintain his or her standard of living.

In many cases, figuring out one's income for child support is fairly simple and largely a matter of reviewing a few paystubs. However, it is important to remember that many employees in Orange County, particularly those who are in leadership or professional positions, may also receive a number of fringe benefits. Examples of typical fringe benefits include a retirement plan with matching compensation or health insurance.

It seems that more and more, the sky is the limit as to the types of benefits one might receive. Free meals are getting more popular, and some employees may even receive a company car or even some lodging close to their work.

When determining child support, a California judge may consider fringe benefits as income that will be included in the standard calculation. A judge does not have to do so though, and the judge should consider both the nature of the benefit and whether the benefit actually is reducing the employee's daily expenses, thus leaving more discretionary income that can be applied to child support.

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