Nevada Child Custody and Support Guidelines:
In determining custody of a minor child, the sole consideration of the court is the best interest of the child. If it appears to the court that joint custody would be in the best interest of the child, the court may grant custody to the parties jointly. Preference must not be given to either parent for the sole reason that the parent is the mother or the father of the child. In determining the best interest of the child, the court shall consider and set forth its specific findings concerning, among other things:
- The wishes of the child if the child is of sufficient age and capacity to form an intelligent preference as to his custody.
- Any nomination by a parent or a guardian for the child.
- Which parent is more likely to allow the child to have frequent associations and a continuing relationship with the non-custodial parent.
- The level of conflict between the parents.
- The ability of the parents to cooperate to meet the needs of the child.
- The mental and physical health of the parents.
- The physical, developmental and emotional needs of the child.
- The nature of the relationship of the child with each parent.
- The ability of the child to maintain a relationship with any sibling.
- Any history of parental abuse or neglect of the child or a sibling of the child.
- Whether either parent or any other person seeking custody has engaged in an act of domestic violence against the child, a parent of the child or any other person residing with the child.
The court may award joint legal custody without awarding joint physical custody in a case where the parents have agreed to joint legal custody. [Based on Nevada Revised Statutes 125.480]Child Support:
Nevada uses the "Income Shares" method to determine child support, meaning that the level of support is based on a percentage of the non-custodial parent's gross income. Gross monthly income means the total amount of income received each month from any source of a person who is not self-employed or the gross income from any source of a self-employed person, after deduction of all legitimate business expenses, but without deduction for personal income taxes, contributions for retirement benefits, contributions to a pension or for any other personal expenses..
The court shall consider the following factors when adjusting the amount of support of a child upon specific findings of fact:
- The cost of health insurance.
- The cost of child care.
- Any special educational needs of the child.
- The age of the child.
- The legal responsibility of the parents for the support of others.
- The value of services contributed by either parent.
- Any public assistance paid to support the child.
- Any expenses reasonably related to the mothers pregnancy and confinement.
- The cost of transportation of the child to and from visitation if the custodial parent moved with the child from the jurisdiction of the court which ordered the support and the non-custodial parent remained.
- The amount of time the child spends with each parent.
- Any other necessary expenses for the benefit of the child.
- The relative income of both parents.
The minimum amount of support that may be awarded by a court in any case is $100 per month per child, unless the court makes a written finding that the obligor is unable to pay the minimum amount. Willful underemployment or unemployment is not a sufficient cause to deviate from the awarding of at least the minimum amount. [Based on Nevada Revised Statutes 125B.070 and 125B.080]