When does CS kick in?


For the last couple of years, the parents operated under a non-incorporated separation agreement which detailed child support and custody for several children. Since then, one child has become an adult (and the parents voluntarily renegotiated the appropriate child support using the calculators), and a couple of months ago, 1/2 custody had to be relinquished for another child due to his physical attack on his parent. That child is now full time with the mom.

Unfortunately, no modification of custody was filed and the parents didn’t agree on a child support amount. Father ran the calculator on this site and paid what he thought was fair, but mother didn’t agree and filed an action with CSE. As it turned out, circumstances changed while going through with CSE, and as it ended up, the father’s portion of CS turned out to be far less than he had been paying. Father signed the papers and agreed to the amount that CSE dictated. Garnishment is due to begin in August. Until then, he was instructed to pay by check.

The question is: what amount should he pay in the one month interval before garnishment kicks in?

Should he pay the amount he signed for with CSE, should he pay the old original sep agreement amount, or should he pay the amount from the previous month, which is somewhere in between?

Mom seems to think that he should pay the original sep agreement amount which includes for the child who is an adult. Dad thinks that since all the paperwork has been signed by him with CSE, the new amount is the appropriate one. The mother is currently threatening to bring an action for breach of contract based upon the fact that the father isn’t paying the full amount of the sep agreement.

Also, there is a clause in the sep agreement which says that the child support amount will be recalculated when “the parents no longer operate under a shared custody agreement”. Does this affect anything since one child is no longer shared, although the others still are?


He needs to pay the amount as determined by CSE, the agreement is no longer the “law of the case” since CSE has set a new amount of support.


Thanks so much Erin. That was my understanding. We get a lot of “I’m going to sue because my attorney said” so it’s hard to sort it out. Thanks for the help.


You are welcome.