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Family Law Software can calculate child support guideline amounts in 21 states.

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Question: Why would taxes for guidelines be different than "actual" taxes?

Answer: There are some cases where taxes for guidelines will be different than "actual" taxes.

1. Filing Status differences.

The software uses the filing status for "future years" in calculating taxes for child support guideline purposes. But it uses the filing status for the current year to calculate the "actual" taxes for the current year.

The reason for this is that we are doing our best to approximate what taxes will be "after the dust settles," to give the most accurate implementation of the guidelines.

For example, the filing status for the current year may be "married filing separately," but for future years it may be "single." We use "single" in calculating taxes for guideline purposes.

If you want the taxes to be the same, but without changing the filing status in the Lawyer/Financial tabs, you may override the filing status that is used in the Guideline tab. To do that (this may vary slightly from state to state and will not be available in all states):

  • Click Guidelines tab > Deductions (or find the screen where taxes are covered).

  • At the top of the screen, click the link labeled "Tax Worksheet."

  • Find the filing status and override (type over) it.

The software will use the filing status you entered in calculating taxes for guideline purposes.

2. Alimony differences.

If alimony is being paid in the current year, that will be counted for "actual" taxes but often is omitted for the tax as calculated for guideline purposes.

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