Beginning August 1st the formula for calculating monthly child support in Minnesota will change. Currently, the shifts in child support are at three levels; parenting time during the month below 10%, between 10%-45.1% and above 45.1%. The problem with this structure, referred to as the “cliff,” is that a someone with as little as 3 days of parenting a month could pay the same as someone with 14 days of parenting a month. Or a parent that only has 2 days less of parenting in a month than the other parent could end up paying several hundred dollars more in monthly child support.

A call for reform of this formula has resulted in a new law changing the parenting expense adjustment. This new formula is described as a “curve” instead of a “cliff.” There will be more levels of adjustment and less dramatic shifts in child support. Parenting time will be averaged over 2 years counting overnights or “substantial time” if not an overnight. A parent with 55% or more of the time with their children will presumed to have a zero basic support obligation.

A new free online calculator for child support should be available this summer through the Department of Human Services website.

The current calculator can be found here.