Skip to main content
Child Support

How Child Support Is Calculated in Ohio

For divorcing couples who share custody of minor children, one party or the other will likely be paying child support (although there are rare exceptions). In Ohio, child support is paid until the child reaches age 18 or graduates from high school, whichever happens last. As for calculating the support amount, it’s not 100% clear.

Many people think that child support calculations are simple, but they can become more complicated in many cases. At the most basic level, child support is calculated based on the combined gross annual income of the mother and father and how much time each parent will spend with the children. However, determining the level of income and any appropriate adjustments is often up for discussion.

Calculations that make the child support a little trickier include overtime, bonuses, commissions, self-employment, earnings outside the marriage, etc. Likewise, income could adjust based on anything from previous spousal support to health insurance and childcare expenses.

Collecting Child Support in Ohio

In Ohio, the Child Support Enforcement Agency handles support collection, and they will garnish wages to collect child support if it becomes past due. Child support cannot be paid outside of the agency, however, in certain circumstances, spouses can agree to divide-up the children’s actual expenses as opposed to paying support through the agency.

Determining Who Will Pay Child Support

Various factors come into play, especially if there is a large discrepancy in income between the spouses and the children spend more time with the lower-earning parent. In that case, the higher-earning parent would likely be responsible for support. On the other hand, if the higher-earning parent is also the custodial parent, the lower-earning parent could be responsible for support.

Do Spouses Have to Use Ohio’s Child Support Calculator?

The state’s calculator is a mandatory first step in the process but, if spouses can mediate outside of court, there is much more opportunity and freedom to figure out a calculation that works for everyone.


If you’re facing a potential divorce and children are involved, then you’ll need trusted and aggressive representation on your side. Call Garretson & Holcomb, LLC today at (513) 863-6600 to learn more about our experience in divorce and family law.

site by LegalRev