Are Child Support Payments Gender-Based?

by Wayne Thomas
Child support calculations do not take gender into account.

Child support calculations do not take gender into account.

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The purpose of child support is to ensure that both parents share in financially supporting their children after divorce. Although states can vary on the exact procedure to determine which parent pays support and the amount paid, the obligation is never based on gender.

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Determining Who Pays

In most states, the parent ordered to pay child support has either more income or fewer overnights with the child than the other parent. The obligation then arises out of an effort to balance the financial burden between parents. Once the court determines which parent should pay support, the actual support obligation is arrived at using guidelines contained in that state's statutes. The guideline amounts are not based on gender, but on a percentage of the paying parent's income alone, or as a proportion of that parent's income to the combined incomes of both parents.