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Understanding the Massachusetts 2017 Child Support Worksheet


1. All the numbers in the worksheet are WEEKLY.

2. Supplemental income is not included in the calculation (that is income earned from a part time job that is worked beyond a full-time job).

3. Massachusetts child support applies only to combined incomes up to $250,000 /year.

4. A new feature of the 2017 child support worksheet is the inclusion of children older than 18. Their inclusion increases child support by about 2%.


1. If the parties' combined gross income adds up to $250,000 /year or less, just plug in their gross weekly incomes (each party's annual gross income divided by 52) in part 2 of the worksheet and you can disregard the next two points in this section.

2. If the parties' combined gross incomes exceed $250,000, you will see that although you have plugged in the real gross weekly incomes to begin with (part 2 of the worksheet), the worksheet only assumes a combined income of $4,808 /week (line 3a), which is $250,000 /52. It applies the correct ratio of your incomes to this number.

3. The income in excess of $250,000 that was not used so far by the worksheet is noted on Page 2 of the worksheet (lines 6a and 6b). How that extra income is dealt with is subject to negotiation between the parties (ignored, applied to alimony or reapplied to the child support worksheet: it's the parties' choice).

4. You have to do the calculation for each party: In other words, figure how much each party would pay if they had to pay full child support. This means switching the information under payor and recipient in part 2 of the worksheet. Switch the incomes and the various deductions per party. Now you have two worksheets filled out, one for each party.


1. NOTE: the final number per each worksheet appears on Page 2 of the worksheet under 5b. These are the numbers you have to work with.

2. Finally: What support will be paid?

- The parent with primary physical custody of the children (has the children more than 2/3 of the time), will get the full amount indicated on the worksheet in which the other parent is listed as the payor.

- If physical custody is close to equal, the party with the higher income will pay the difference between the child support order that is applied to him/her and the child support order that applies to the other parent.