Securing Your Child’s Future: A Look at Alaska Child Support

Child support is an important part of a custody or divorce case with children. In Alaska, family courts follow guidelines to determine how much child support a parent must pay or receive.

Parents in Alaska have a legal obligation to provide financial support for their children. This is largely enforced through periodic court-ordered child maintenance payments. Alaska Child Support Services Division is authorized by law to collect and process child support payments and enforce child support orders. Back child support is the unpaid amount that a parent owes to the custodial parent after being court-ordered to make such payments.

Establishing Paternity and Alaska Child Support Orders

The first step is to establish paternity (legal fatherhood) if it hasn’t already been done. The Alaska Child Support Services Division (CSED) within the Alaska Department of Social Services can help with this process through genetic testing.

Once paternity is established, there are two main ways to set up a child support order:

  • Agreement: Both parents can come to an agreement on child support amount, visitation, and other arrangements. The CSED can help you put this agreement into a legally enforceable court order.
  • Court Order: If you cannot agree, a judge will determine child support based on Alaska’s child support guidelines.
Alaska Child Support Eligibility
Securing Your Child's Future: A Look at Alaska Child Support 1

Alaska Child Support Eligibility

In Alaska, Civil Rule 90.3 sets out the guidelines that family courts must follow to determine a child support amount. It includes the formulas for sole, shared, and hybrid custody. The formulas consider both parents’ gross earnings, including wages, salaries, overtime, commissions, bonuses, dividends, worker’s compensation benefits, and employer-provided housing and food. However, it does not include alimony, child or spousal maintenance, or income from a trust fund.

The calculation of child support under hybrid and divided custody arrangements is more complicated. The state child support division provides a tool that calculates both the mother and father’s potential support obligations. The tool uses overnight estimates and significant day visits to calculate parenting time totals, which are then converted to a percentage.

How to Apply for the Alaska Child Support Program?

Parents can apply for child support by submitting completed worksheets and other supporting documentation. The worksheets on the Alaska Court System Self-Help Center are designed to help parents understand how courts calculate child support guidelines in their state. The site also has links to statutes and other resources.

The CSED can help you establish paternity, set up a child support order, enforce existing orders, and collect payments. You can apply for services online, by phone, or in person at your local CSED office. Here are the resources to get started:

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