The Self-Support Reserve Computation? Easy!

Every state has a mandatory formula for the computation of child support.  You’re a legal professional; you know there are exceptions to every rule.  Do you know what the “self-support reserve” exception is to a strict computation of child support?

Unfortunately, in today’s economy, every family law attorney needs to be familiar with the “self-support reserve,” the floor below which a child support variance would become appropriate.  If you represent someone who has lost there job and is surviving on government benefits, you need to know this figure.  If you represent a child support claimant, you need to not be caught unaware of an impending argument for a variance on this basis.

The federal government annually releases the “poverty guidelines,” defining the poverty rate, based upon household size.  In 2011, the poverty guideline for a single person was $10,890/year.  States set their “self-support reserve” as a multiplier of the federal poverty guidelines.

For example, let’s say you’re computing child support for NY.  NY set its “self-support reserve” at 135% of the federal poverty guidelines.  For a child support payor, alone in a household, the self-support reserve would be $10,890 x 135% or $14,702.

If you’re using the NY child support calculator in the EzSupport-NY legal software, you can save yourself the steps of keeping track of the federal government annual poverty announcements, checking for the affiliated state updates, and remembering to apply the self-support reserve each time you make a child support calculation.  Use Easy Soft law office software to increase your productivity and ensure your accuracy.

With Easy Soft’s family law software, if a payor’s income is at or below the self-support reserve, you will receive a computer-generated alert that says “Low income adjustment applicable,” along with detailed notices such as “more than the poverty level $10,890 but less than self-support reserve $14,702.”

Whether you are calculating child support as part of a divorce settlement or part of a modification or enforcement proceeding, let Easy Soft’s legal software automate your calculations and generate needed alerts.

After all, don’t you already have enough to do in each case without having to remember every figure on your own?