Calculate Wisconsin Child Support Payments

Wisconsin uses overnights, or where the children sleep, to determine how much child support should be paid by the non-residential parent. Joint custody payments vary depending on overnights, but for sole custody, the court uses the standard percentage model based on the number of children.

  • For 1 child, it is 17%
  • For 2 children, it is 25%
  • For 3 children it is 29%
  • For 4 children, it is 31%
  • For 5 children, it is 34%

Calculate Child Support

Use the calculators below to estimate child support payments.

Shared Custody Child Support Calculator
Sole Custody Child Support Calculator

Be aware when using the phrase, child custody, legally we are not talking about spending time with the child(ren) nor does child custody impact child support payments. The phrase child custody from the court's perspective is defined as decision-making responsibility. The correct legal term for time with the child(ren) is placement. Placement or time spent with the child(ren) does directly impact child support obligations, while child custody or decision-making does not impact child support obligations.

How to calculate child support in Wisconsin

Every state has set child support guidelines as well as several different child support worksheets you can fill out. There are also options when determining child support. In Wisconsin, our support order guidelines help determine the amount due from one spouse to the other in the event of a divorce or legal separation. Below you will find the type of information you need to as well as the percentages required for payment based on Wisconsin DCF 150. First, we need to calculate the paying party's net income. To determine net income we need to add up monies considered income like the following:

  • Wages
  • Overtime work
  • Commissions
  • Tips
  • Bonuses
  • Rental income
  • Interest income

Once the gross income is determined the court will determine the net income of the paying party. This is not done by using tax returns rather the court will deduct social security taxes, federal income taxes based on the tax rate for a single person claiming one personal exemption and the standard deduction, state income tax, union dues, and expenses for the cost of health insurance for the child. It is also worth mentioning that child support is not taxable by the spouse receiving it, so it will not be a tax related issue for the recipient of it.

Do You Still Have to Pay Child Support if You Have 50 50 Custody?

Yes, one parent will be obligated to pay child support unless both parents spend the exact amount of time with the child and earn the exact same income, which is a rare. Wisconsin child support laws say that a shared placement formula can be used if certain guidelines are met. Typically the court will approve the use of this formula when:

  • if the parenting plan states that both parents will have the children at least 92 overnights per year
  • if the parenting plan states each parent will pay for the child’s basic needs proportionately to the time each parent has placement of the child.

The Wisconsin 50/50 Child Support formula is based on the Percentage Standard guideline in conjunction with the time spent with each parent. The Percentage Standards guidelines are as follows:

  • 17% of gross income for 1 child
  • 25% of gross income for 2 children
  • 29% of gross income for 3 children
  • 31% of gross income for 4 children
  • 34% of gross income for 5 or more children

For a detailed worksheet on how the Wisconsin Shared-Placement formula works download the worksheet here.

To refer directly to DCF 150 review the section labeled DCF 150.04(2)(b) Support Orders. Above is a worksheet we put together to help calculate the amount child support payers will pay in child support. If you need further assistance please contact us we would be happy to help.

Wisconsin Shared Custody Child Support Calculator

These are estimates based on the statutory guidelines. Please also note child support payments may be different than displayed below based on the circumstances of your individual case. 

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Enter Parent A's YEARLY gross income (before taxes)

Enter Parent B's YEARLY gross income (before taxes)

Parent A274 Overnights

Parent B: 91 Overnights

Example: Forty six weekends (Friday night & Saturady night) throughout the year. 

Parent A255 Overnights

Parent B: 110 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) throughout the year. 

Parent A237 Overnights

Parent B: 128 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus one weekday night every other week (i.e. Wednesday night) throughout the year.

Parent A219 Overnights

Parent B: 146 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus two weekday nights twenty two weeks (i.e. Wednesday night & Thursday night) throughout the year.

Parent A200 Overnights

Parent B: 165 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus two weekday nights every other week (i.e. Wednesday night & Thursday night) throughout the year.

Parent A: 183 Overnights

Parent B: 182 Overnights

Example: Alternating weeks where the first week parent A has three overnights (i.e. Wednesday, Thursday & Friday night) and during the second week four overnights (i.e. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday night).

Parent A: 165 Overnights

Parent B: 200 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus two weekday nights every other week (i.e. Wednesday night & Thursday night) throughout the year.

Parent A: 146 Overnights

Parent B: 219 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus two weekday nights twenty two weeks (i.e. Wednesday night & Thursday night) throughout the year.

Parent A: 128 Overnights

Parent B237 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) plus one weekday night every other week (i.e. Wednesday night) throughout the year.

Parent A: 110 Overnights

Parent B255 Overnights

Example: Every weekend (Friday night & Saturady night) throughout the year. 

Parent A: 91 Overnights

Parent B274 Overnights

Example: Forty six weekends (Friday night & Saturady night) throughout the year. 

Parent A's Estimated Payment to Parent B

Parent B's Estimated Payment to Parent A

* Required

Wisconsin Child Support Guidelines for Sole Custody

The court will then use a standard percentage model based on the number of children when one parent has the children for less than than 92 overnights throughout the year. A typical example of this type of arrangement is every other weekend. When these placement arrangements are in place the court will use the percentage standard model shown below.

  • For 1 child, it is 17%
  • For 2 children, it is 25%
  • For 3 children it is 29%
  • For 4 children, it is 31%
  • For 5 children, it is 34%

Sole Custody Child Support Examples

Monthly Income1 child (17%)2 children (25%)3 children (29%)4 children (31%)5 children (34%)
$1,500$255$375$435$465$510
$2,000$340$500$580$620$680
$2,500$425$625$725$775$850
$3,000$510$750$870$930$1,020
$3,500$595$875$1,015$1,085$1,190
$4,000$680$1,000$1,160$1,240$1,360

For more examples download the pdf here.

To refer directly to DCF 150 review the section labeled DCF 150.03 Support Orders. Above is a worksheet we put together to help calculate the amount child support payers will pay in child support. If you need further assistance please contact us we would be happy to help.

Wisconsin Sole Custody
Child Support Calculator

These are estimates based on the statutory guidelines. Please also note child support payments may be different than displayed below based on the circumstances of your individual case. 

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$0
* Required

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you calculate child support in Wisconsin?

To calculate child support in Wisconsin first the type of custody needs to be determined.

If each parent has more than 92 overnights per year, then the State of Wisconsin has determined those parents are in a joint custody scenario and they must use a joint custody calculator to determine child support payments.

If both parents do not have 92 overnights per year then the State of Wisconsin has determined the parent with the greater number of overnights has sole custody of the child. To determine child support in a sole custody scenario the parents must use percentage standard to determine child support payments.

What is child support percentage in Wisconsin?

The percentage of child support paid in Wisconsin is determined by the type of custody arrangement. If the custody arrangement is sole custody then the following are the percentages used to calculate child support payments.

  • 17% of gross income for 1 child
  • 25% of gross income for 2 children
  • 29% of gross income for 3 children
  • 31% of gross income for 4 children
  • 34% of gross income for 5 or more children
  • If the custody arrangement is joint custody, meaning both parents have the child more than 92 overnights a year, then child support payments are determined based on gross income and time spent with both parents.

    The shared placement child support calculator found on this page is a great way to estimate shared child custody payments.

    Does a father pay child support with 50 50 custody?

    In a shared custody scenario, where both parents have the children 182.5 overnights per year and both parents make the same gross income no child support payments would be required.

    However, if on parent makes substantially more than the other parent in the same scenario where both parents have 182.5 overnights then the higher earning parent will pay child support to the other parent.

    The shared placement child support calculator found on this page is a great way to estimate shared child custody payments.

    Is child support based on gross income or net income?

    In the State of Wisconsin child support is determined using estimated annual gross income.

    Can child support take your whole paycheck?

    In the State of Wisconsin law limits the amount that can be garnished for a child support order as follows.

    • 50% of disposable income if the payer has an intact family living with her or him (a spouse and/or child) and has no arrears
    • 55% of disposable income if the payer has an intact family living with her or him (a spouse and/or child) and has arrears
    • 60% of disposable income if the payer has no intact family (a spouse and/or child) living with her or him and has no arrears
    • 65% of disposable income if the payer has no intact family (a spouse and/or child) living with her or him and has arrears
    The State of Wisconsin defines gross income as all of the employee’s income from all sources before mandatory deductions for federal, state, local, and Social Security taxes are deducted. Gross income also includes employee contributions to any employee benefit program or profit-sharing and voluntary contributions to any pension or retirement account whether or not the account provides for tax deferral or avoidance.

    The State of Wisconsin defines disposable income as the part of the earnings of the employee remaining after deducting federal, state, and local withholding taxes, and Social Security taxes. Deductions for Individual Retirement Accounts, medical expense accounts, etc do not reduce disposable income.


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