Register March 2022 No. 795
Chapter DCF 150
CHILD SUPPORT STANDARD
Determining the child support obligation.
Determining the child support obligation in special circumstances.
Ch. DCF 150 Note
Chapter HSS 80 was renumbered chapter DWD 40 by emergency rule effective October 1, 1998. Chapter HSS 80 as it existed on July 31, 1999 was renumbered chapter DWD 40, Register, July, 1999, No. 523
, eff. 8-1-99. Chapter DWD 40 was renumbered to chapter DCF 150 under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 1., Stats., Register November 2008 No. 635
Section 49.22 (9)
, Stats., requires the department to adopt and publish a standard to be used by courts in determining child support obligations. The standard is to be based on a percentage of the gross income and assets of either or both parents.
The percentage standard established in this chapter is based on an analysis of national studies, including a study done by Jacques Van der Gaag as part of the Child Support Project of the Institute for Research on Poverty, University of Wisconsin, Madison, entitled “On Measuring the Cost of Children," which disclose the amount of income and disposable assets that parents use to raise their children. The standard is based on the principle that a child's standard of living should, to the degree possible, not be adversely affected because his or her parents are not living together. It determines the percentage of a parent's income and potential income from assets that parents should contribute toward the support of children if the family does not remain together. The standard determines the minimum amount each parent is expected to contribute to the support of their children. It expects that the custodial parent shares his or her income directly with their children. It also presumes that the basic needs of the children are being met. This latter presumption may be rebutted by clear and convincing evidence that the needs of the children are not being met.
The rules also prescribe procedures for determining equitable child support obligations under a variety of financial and family circumstances.
This chapter applies to any petition for a temporary or final order for child support of a marital or nonmarital child in an action affecting a family under ch. 767
, Stats., any stipulated child support settlement under s. 767.34
, Stats., or any revision of judgment under s. 767.59
Effect of rule change.
A modification of any provision in this chapter shall not in and of itself be considered a substantial change in circumstances sufficient to justify a revision of a judgment or order under s. 767.59
DCF 150.01 Note
Note: A modification of any provision in this chapter shall apply to orders established after the effective date of the modification.
DCF 150.01 History
Cr. Register, January, 1987, No. 373
, eff. 2-1-87; r. (2) (b) to (d), Register, August, 1987, No. 380
, eff. 9-1-87; am. (1), r. and recr. (2), Register, February, 1995, No. 470
, eff. 3-1-95; correction in (1) made under s. 13.93 (2m) (b) 7., Stats., Register January 2003 No. 565
; CR 03-022
: cr. (3) Register December 2003 No. 576
, eff. 1-1-04; corrections made under s. 13.93 (2m) (b) 7., Stats., Register June 2007 No. 618
; CR 09-036
: am. (1) Register November 2009 No. 647
, eff. 1-1-10.
DCF 150.02 Definitions.
In this chapter:
“Acknowledgement of paternity" means both the mother and the father voluntarily signed and filed a form under s. 69.15 (3) (b) 1.
, Stats., with the state registrar.
“Adjusted monthly income available for child support" means the monthly income at which the child support obligation is determined for serial family payers, which is the payer's monthly income available for child support less the amount of any existing legal obligation for child support.
“Basic support costs" means food, shelter, clothing, transportation, personal care, and incidental recreational costs.
“Child" means the natural or adopted child of the payer.
“Child support" or “child support obligation" means an obligation to support a marital child either in an intact family or as a result of a court order, an obligation to support the payer's nonmarital child as a result of a court order, or an obligation to support the payer's nonmarital child in an intact family as a result of adoption, maternity or an acknowledgement of paternity.
“Court" means a circuit court judge or family court commissioner.
“Current 6-month treasury bill rate" means the yield of a U.S. government security with a term of 6 months.
“Department" means the Wisconsin department of children and families.
“Dependent household member" means a person for whom a taxpayer is entitled to an exemption for the taxable year under 26 USC 151
“Designated percentage” means the applicable percentage of a parent's monthly income available for child support or adjusted monthly income available for child support under s. DCF 150.035 (2)
or 150.04 (4)
DCF 150.02 Note
Note: The standard is based on national studies of the percentage of income used to support a child or children, with adjustment downward of those percentages to reflect costs incurred by the payer for what used to be called visitation under Wisconsin law and is now called physical placement and to maintain health insurance for the child or children.
“Equivalent care” means a period of time during which the parent cares for the child that is not overnight, but is determined by the court to require the parent to assume the basic support costs that are substantially equivalent to what the parent would spend to care for the child overnight. Blocks of time with the child of at least 6 hours may be considered the equivalent of a half-day if a meal is provided during that time period. Two half-day blocks may be considered the equivalent of an overnight.
“Family support" means an amount which a person is legally obligated to pay pursuant to an order under s. 767.531
, Stats., as a substitute for child support under s. 767.511
, Stats., and maintenance payments under s. 767.56
“Federal dependency exemption" means the deduction allowed in computing taxable income pursuant to 26 USC 151
for a child of the taxpayer who has not attained the age of 19 or who is a student.
“Federal poverty guidelines" means the poverty guidelines updated periodically in the Federal Register by the U.S. department of health and human services under the authority of 42 USC 9902
Net proceeds resulting from worker's compensation or other personal injury awards intended to replace income.
Voluntary deferred compensation, employee contributions to any employee benefit plan or profit–sharing, and employee contributions to any pension or retirement account whether or not the account provides for tax deferral or avoidance.
Veterans disability compensation benefits and military allowances, including basic allowances for subsistence and housing, but excluding amounts attributable to area variable housing costs.
Undistributed income of a corporation, including a closely–held corporation, or any partnership, including a limited or limited liability partnership, in which the parent has an ownership interest sufficient to individually exercise control or to access the earnings of the business, unless the income included is an asset under s. DCF 150.03 (4)
. In this paragraph:
“Undistributed income" means federal taxable income of the closely held corporation, partnership, or other entity plus depreciation claimed on the entity's federal income tax return less a reasonable allowance for economic depreciation.
A “reasonable allowance for economic depreciation" means the amount of depreciation on assets computed using the straight line method
and useful lives as determined under federal income tax laws and regulations.
DCF 150.02 Note
Income considered under this subsection is subject to the adjustments under s. DCF 150.03 (2)
All other income, whether taxable or not, except that gross income does not include any of the following:
Public assistance benefits under ch. 49
, Stats., except that child care subsidy payments under s. 49.155
, Stats., shall be considered income to a child care provider.