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Child support and split child custody arrangements in Arizona

Many families in Arizona have child custody arrangements. Each of these child custody arrangements may be different depending on the specific circumstances within each family. Ultimately, the custody determination is based on what is in the best interest of the child. Each child custody arrangement also has an effect on the child support determination, so child support determinations are unique.

A common visitation schedule involves all the children being with one parent or the other. However, this does not need to be the case. Sometimes, it is better for one child to reside primarily with one parent while another child is better off with the other parent. These types of situations are not generally difficult when determining a visitation schedule, but they can complicate the child support calculation.

When all the children are together with either parent, it is easier to determine the percentage of visitation each parent has with the children. However, in the split custody situation, this is more difficult and visitation affects the child support calculation. Therefore, when there is a split custody arrangement, there will be separate calculations for each child.

The calculations will be made for each child as if they were an only child of the relationship. Then, whichever parent owes the greater amount of child support will have the amount the other parent would owe them deducted from their monthly payment and that will be their monthly child support obligation.

Each family situation in Arizona is unique and, therefore, when the parents divorce each child custody determination will be unique. As a result, the child support calculation can also be unique. This is especially the case when there is a split custody arrangement. Experienced attorneys understand the unique dynamics of child custody and child support and may be a useful resource.

Source: Superior Court of Maricopa County, "Arizona Child Support Guidelines," accessed on July 20, 2015

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