piggy bank

Guidance on Calculating Support of Self Employed Payors

The Court of Appeal gave clear direction today on how to determine child support for a self employed payor. Here's the Court's finding:

"...we are of the opinion that in order to properly determine the
income of a self-employed child-support payor, a trial court must first consider the past two
years of tax returns, and quarterly estimates for the current year, allowing depreciation as a
deduction if it reflects the actual decrease in value of an asset. Then, if the trial court believes
that the tax returns are unreliable, the trial court must make specific findings to support that
determination. After doing so, the trial court can then proceed to determine a child-support
payor's income by using a net worth method."

Here's the link...
Wright v. Wright

Note: I'm a little concerned about the word "unreliable" in this opinion. Almost sounds like you have to show that the tax return was somehow prepared improperly. I think what the court is intending to say is that if the court does not believe the tax returns are providing a true indication of the payor's income then the court can look to other evidence.