Do I Still Have to Pay Child Support If I Have Joint Custody?

Have you wondered, “Do I still have to pay Nevada child support if you have joint custody?”

Joint custody arrangements can get complicated.

When parents stop cohabitating, it can get confusing when it comes to who pays child support. In Nevada, parents must contribute to the costs of raising a child.

Child support is one of the first issues that arise during a legal custody battle. Someone must pay for the children’s expenses, including school and medical expenses.

Here’s what you need to know about how child support works with joint custody in Nevada.

Do I Still Have to Pay Child Support If I Have Joint Custody_

How Does Joint Custody Work in Nevada?

There are two types of custody—legal and physical.

Legal custody refers to which parent will make major life decisions for the children.

This includes:

  • which school the child will attend,
  • which doctor the child will see,
  • and which religion the children would take.

But, physical custody decides which parent the children will live with.

Joint physical custody is where both parents share the duties for the care of their kids. It is a situation where children live with each parent around 50% of the time.

How Does Child Support Work in Joint Physical Custody?

Do YOU still have to pay child support if you have joint custody?

You might.

The court determines how much child support you each pay based on your monthly income. The court then deducts the lower-earning parent’s amount from the higher-earning parent’s. Then the higher-earning parent pays the difference.

This means that the spouse who earns more pays support to the spouse that earns less. But, it does not mean that this child support law punishes the higher-earning parent. Instead, it is to protect the children’s standard of living.

When both incomes are equal, the court may rule that neither parent pay child support.

This scenario is different when only one parent has primary physical custody. The custodial parent handles the majority of the child’s day-to-day expenses. The non-custodial parent is required to pay child support.

How is Child Support Calculated?

Like most states, Nevada calculated child support using a flat percentage at first. But, Nevada began using a tiered income scale in February 2020.

Today, it gets calculated based on percentages of both parent’s monthly gross income. The number of children also gets considered.

Gross monthly income is the sum of all monthly earnings, including:

  • your salary,
  • wages,
  • bonuses,
  • and commissions from your job.

Though, there are some exceptions to the standard calculations.

Children with special needs, for example, may need more financial help. So, the judge may change these calculations to reimburse:

  • medical bills,
  • health insurance premiums,
  • and other necessary expenses.

The number of kids will also determine the income percentages used in the formula. See below for the full breakdown.

Number of Children


$6,0000 to $10,000

Over $10,000

One child




Two children




Three children




Four children




Additional child




As mentioned above, joint custody requires the higher-earning parent to pay more. This means that the amounts get subtracted from one another.

For example, one parent’s custody amount equals $600 per month. The other parent’s contribution is $250. So, the parent with the higher monthly income would deduct $250 from their $600 monthly child support obligation. They then would submit a payment of $350 each month.

Can I Avoid Paying Child Support?

Do you need to pay child support in joint custody?

Is it possible to avoid paying?

The short answer to both questions is no. You must pay court-ordered child support. If a parent fails to make court-ordered child support payments, they go “in arrears.”

Failure to pay child support on time and in full can result in penalties. These penalties can range from fines to suspending your driver’s license and even jail time. It can even result in paying an accrued amount totaling thousands of dollars.

Suppose you can no longer afford to pay child support because you lost your job. Then, requesting a change in child support from the other non-custodial parent and the court is critical.

If the other parent agrees, you can sign a stipulation agreeing to the change. The judge signs the stipulation and enters it as your new court order. If the other parent refuses, you can still opt to reopen your divorce or custody case. You then can file a motion to change child support.

A court can impute income to a parent who is unemployed or underemployed. For example, if a parent cannot work due to a disability, that parent will not get held liable for extra income.

A parent who refuses to work cannot avoid child support payments, though.

How Long Do I Need to Pay Child Support?

Child support gets paid until a child reaches the age of 18. If the child is still in high school, the parent will still need to pay until graduation or when they reach the age of 19.

Further Reading

Here are the additional posts that can assist readers:

Do You Have Child Custody Questions?” – This post provides general information and addresses common questions readers may have regarding child custody.

Tips For Modifying Nevada Child Support” – This post offers tips and guidance for individuals seeking to modify child support orders in Nevada, highlighting important considerations and legal processes.

Nevada Child Support” – This post provides an overview of child support laws and regulations in Nevada, including how child support is calculated and enforced.

5 Things Fathers Should Know About Child Custody” – This post specifically focuses on fathers and provides essential information they should be aware of when dealing with child custody matters.

Unmarried Parents? Win Your Custody Battle Now!” – This post offers guidance and strategies for unmarried parents involved in custody battles, empowering them to navigate the legal process effectively.

Avoid These Mistakes to Keep Custody” – This post highlights common mistakes that individuals should avoid to maintain custody of their children and provides insights on how to safeguard their rights.

Grandparents Rights in Nevada” – This post focuses on the rights of grandparents in Nevada and provides information on how they can pursue visitation or custody rights for their grandchildren.

103 Things Mothers Should Know About Child Custody in Nevada” – This comprehensive post provides mothers in Nevada with 103 key things they should be aware of regarding child custody, helping them understand the relevant legal aspects.

What are the 5 Types of Custody?” – This post explains the different types of custody arrangements that may be considered in child custody cases, offering readers a clear understanding of the available options.

How Do You Get Full Custody of a Child” – This post explores the process and factors involved in seeking full custody of a child, providing insights and guidance for individuals pursuing this goal.

These posts aim to provide valuable information and support to readers dealing with child custody matters.

Filing in Family Law Cases in Nevada Checklist
Next Steps

What’s Next?

Looking for a Las Vegas child custody attorney in Las Vegas?

Look no further than the Rosenblum Allen Law Firm! Our team of expert attorneys understands your needs and will work hard to get you the results you deserve.

With years of experience, our lawyers know what it takes to win any case regarding being legally separated from or divorced by another partner with kids involved.

We ensure they have their best interests taken care of while ensuring all paperwork is filed diligently and accurately. You won’t regret hiring us as your reliable legal counsel!

Call our office today at (702) 433-2889 so we can start protecting your rights —we’re here waiting for you!

The Reason You Haven’t Hired A Child Custody Attorney Yet​

We’re ready to fight for the rights of your family if you hire us. We’re waiting to jump into action on the behalf of your family.

Sign up for our Newsletter