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Are spousal support and child support calculated for a total amount

Baytown, TX |

We have been married for 21 years with one child still under 18. I have not worked outside the home in 14 years, and have been the primary caregiver for minor child with medical issues. Spouse has agreed to pay for everything until I can get my feet under myself, however, my earning potential will be only a fraction of what he provides. With a monthly income after taxes and insurance of $5200, what kind of child and spousal support would be close to likely? I need to start planning my future.

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Attorney answers 3


I am glad you are looking ahead and are trying to plan how you will move forward. You and your husband can agree to anything and you will need your own attorney to make sure that the agreement is enforceable.
As for spousal support: If there is no previous agreement for contractual alimony, then the judge is governed by the guideline of the Texas Family Code. you may be eligible for maintenance under T.F.C. Chapter 8 which prescribes an amount no greater than the lesser of $5,000 or 20% of your husband's GROSS (not net after taxes and insurance).
As for child support: If there is no previous agreement for a specific amount, then the judge is governed by the child support guidelines found at T.F.C. Chapter 154.
I hope this response has been helpful.
Good luck.

Any communication through the AVVO site with Sherrie Travers or any individual member of the firm, Travers & Travers, does NOT establish an attorney-client relationship. Any information given by Sherrie Travers or by any individual member of the firm through the AVVO site is general information and should not be relied on as legal advice. This answer is based upon limited information and is not intended to be conclusive in your circumstances as there may be other factors that might change or alter the advice given herein. Confidential or time-sensitive information should be conducted in person with an attorney.


Child support and spousal support are separate. Child support is based on a percentage of the noncustodial parents income. It is not based on your needs or lifestyle.

Spousal support is a possibility but there are too many factors to go into here.

You should talk to an attorney to get more information about what you can expect.

This answer DOES NOT establish an attorney-client relationship. This answer is based on the limited information provided and is not intended to be conclusive advice. There are likely other factors that might influence or change the advice after a more lengthy consultation.


First, I am sorry you are going through a divorce after such a long marriage. You are smart to begin thinking ahead.

Child support is typically awarded based upon a formula using the income of the person paying the support. There are other possible factors a judge may consider, but typically the support calculation is based upon income.

Spousal maintenance is something you and the other party can agree to, or a judge may order, with the amount and length of time depending upon the circumstances. There are criteria you must meet in order to be awarded spousal maintenance.

If you have not already done so, you should consult an attorney. An attorney can help you view your options realistically and will be able to assist you in negotiating the best possible settlement.

An attorney can also assist you in keeping the process civil and in keeping the ultimate costs down.

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