Welcome to the "Practice Areas" section of our web site. These sections are designed to give you a quick overview of the various areas of law that you might have an interest in or might need to discuss with one of our attorneys. These topic areas are for discussion only and are not legal advice, nor do they create an attorney-client relationship between you and us. These are general statements about the law in Illinois in general. The law itself  and its application to your case can be very complex. Please contact our office today for a free initial consultation at one of our three convenient locations by clicking on the Contact Us link above or below, by calling us at (309) 674-5551 or by emailing me at Thank you for visiting our web site.  




How Child Support is Determined in Illinois


In Illinois, child support is determined by a formula that considers your net income and the number of children you support. Although it sounds routine, it is anything but that. Because of difficult calculations regarding what a person's income actually is comprised of and what taxes and deductions are allowed, hiring the right attorney for the job is crucial. Contact G. Edward Murphy and the team of attorneys at Murphy & Dunn, P.C. to discuss your situation.


Under the statute, the following guidelines apply:


Number of Children

Percentage of Net Income Paid as Child Support


20 percent


28 percent


32 percent


40 percent


45 percent

6 or more

50 percent

The formula assumes that parent receiving child support has primary physical custody of the child or children. If child custody is shared 50-50, then the higher-earning spouse would still have to pay child support, but would pay less than the amount shown in the formula. The court also has the discretion to deviate downward from the guidelines if your earnings are very high, or there are other reasons to do so. Child support is calculated as a specific dollar amount, not as percentage of your pay. If your income changes substantially, child support payments can be modified. In addition, under the new maintenance law, child support is calculated after the payment of maintenance is calculated.


Child Support and Higher Education


In Illinois, child support stops when the child reaches 18 or graduates from high school. However, both parents can be required to contribute to college expenses under a separate Illinois statue. The amount of college and post high school support is determined not just by the income of the parents, but by both the income and assets of both parents and the child, as well as considering all scholarships and loans, the cost of the school, and numerous other factors. It is a complicated process that requires a highly skilled divorce attorney to navigate you though to obtain the best possible result.


For further information, please contact us by completing the Client Contact Sheet above, by e-mailing me at, or by calling attorney one of our attorneys at 309.674.5551.