Recently, model Linda Evangelista' s case for
child support from François-Henri Pinault, created major attention as to how
the New York County State Court would handle calculating child support
for the child of a billionaire. While the case settled, the story raises
interesting questions regarding child support.
Pursuant to Domestic Relations Law 240, basic support of a child is based
on the combined parental income of both parents, and the statutory cap
is $136,000.00. However, under appropriate circumstances the Court may
go above the cap, and often does go above the cap. Under this calculation
of income, after Federal and City taxes, the Court computes the non-residential's
"pro- rata" share to determine the sum of support to be paid
on behalf of the child or children. Additionally, this non-custodial parent
pays his or her pro-rata share of health costs and child care expenses.
Finally, case law allows the Court in is discretion to direct the non-residential
parent to contribute towards expenses for the children, for example, educational
costs or extra curricular expenses, where it deems appropriate.
Accordingly, the circumstances presented by the Evangelista case presented
an unusual circumstance for the average child support case. The Court
is concerned that the basic needs of the child are being met, and in this
case, want to ensure the child is supported in a manner concurrent with
the parties's life style.
However, this case does raise important factors to consider for
high net worth clients. Whether children attend private school, have special needs, or
strong extra curricular activities are important to consider when determining
whether the basic sum of child support is appropriate.
If you are concerned about child support for your children,
contact our office to speak with an attorney who can help answer questions pertaining
to you particular case.