How is the Amount of Child Support Determined in Arizona?

Every state has adopted guidelines setting automatic rates of child support based on certain criteria related to family income and the number of children in the household. In this state, child support payments are based on the Arizona Child Support Guidelines.

Under the Arizona child support guidelines, the total support approximates what the parents would have spent on the child if they were living together as one family. Under this shared income approach, each parent is required to contribute a proportionate share of his and her income. Generally, the non-custodial parent will be ordered by the court to pay a percentage of his or her gross monthly income to the custodial parent in child support.

By application of the guidelines, the amount of support to be paid is calculated after considering many factors, including both parents’ gross incomes, the child’s medical expenses, work-related daycare expenses, any extraordinary expenses and the number of children residing in the home, among other things. The amount of support resulting from calculations performed under the guidelines is presumptively the correct amount to be ordered by the court in any action to establish or modify child support. The court may deviate from the guidelines’ result, however, when necessary to avoid an inappropriate or unjust result in a particular case.