Daniele Johnson & Associates

Understanding How the Georgia Court System Calculates Child Support


If you need to acquire a child support order or have an existing one modified, you must communicate with the Georgia Court System to start the process. They will use completed Child Support Worksheets from both parents to determine how to fairly split up the financial support. These worksheets allow for the calculation of income in two ways. With the findings from the worksheets, it is then possible to apply deviations to find the total. Use this guide to better understand how these calculations are made, so you can breeze through this process with confidence.

The Role of the Child Support Worksheet

When you contact the courts to have a child support order created or modified, you will need to complete the Child Support Worksheet in full. You will be directed to an online system that has a calculator built in for determining the base support numbers for the child. This online system includes a tutorial that may help you complete the worksheet. You will need to input identifying information about your child and both parents at the beginning of the form. Income and expense information comes next to clearly define the child’s needs and parents’ abilities.

Ways the Court System Calculates Income

Depending on the parent’s employment situation, income calculations occur in one of two ways: gross income and imputed income. If you or your child’s other parent can provide proof of income, the courts will go off your reported gross income. You must report all income from every source, whether you earned it or not. If one of you does not have proof of income, the court may decide to use imputed income, which means assigning a specific amount. This usually occurs when a parent does not have employment by choice.

Deviations and How They Impact Support Totals

With the income totals and expense information from the worksheets, court officials can start to apply deviations to come up with a fair division of financial care for the child. These deviations can increase or decrease the total monthly child support award. Both mandatory and discretionary deviations come into play to correctly adjust child support. Mandatory deviations only cover health insurance premiums and child care expenses as needed for work. On the discretionary side, the courts may look at income levels, alimony, parenting time and other factors to find out how to best provide the child with support.

Where to Find Help Acquiring or Modifying Child Support Orders

Every time you want to acquire or modify child support in Georgia, you can expect to begin with the completion of the Child Support Worksheet. This acts as a clear guide in fairly splitting the financial demands of raising a child between both parents. You can move forward in getting this order from the Georgia Court System by working with a skilled child support attorney. They will assist you in navigating the paperwork and court proceedings as you work toward acquiring the proper level of support for your child.

To get started, call Daniele Johnson & Associates at 770-984-5311 for the support you need to navigate this process.

Daniele C. Johnson Esq.

Get your questions answered - Call to schedule a consult (770) 984-5311.