Until relatively recently, Ohio relied on economic calculations from the mid-1980s to determine child support payments. As of spring 2019, however, that is no longer the case.

New child support guidelines went into effect in March 2019. The goal of the legislation was not only to update the data upon which the child support guidelines were based, but also to better consider a parent’s ability to pay when determining child support.

An overview of the new law

One of the most significant changes is the increase to the level of combined gross income that is automatically calculated by the child support tables.  The child support tables now provide an automatic calculation for income up to $336,000 per year, rather than the former amount of up to $150,000 per year.  Above that amount, child support is calculated on a case-by-case basis.

In addition, parenting time may affect child support. The new child support table provides that a parent that has at least 90 overnights with their child will receive a 10% reduction in their ordered payments. The new law also handles childcare costs and medical support differently than before.

These changes were not automatic

It’s important to know that existing child support orders did not automatically update when the new law went into effect. If a couple already had a child support order in place, it has not changed simply because of the new law.

Existing orders will only be adjusted to fit the new guidelines if there is a review or if one parent files a motion to modify child support. The new law provides that the change in law is not sufficient to prove a change in circumstances, so an existing order will not be revised solely based on the change in the law.

As is always the case, how this new law might impact you depends entirely on your specific situation. If you have questions or concerns about these guidelines, or you want to know your options for requesting a child support order review or filing a motion to modify child support, you should speak with an attorney so that he or she can evaluate your case.