VA Child Support App for Android
The VASupportCalc.com project has its second success, this time in the form of an App for Android phones! You can now calculate child support based on the Virginia guideline statute updated July 1, 2014. And you can do the calculations offline! The new app is available at the Google Play store as of today (11/9/14). If you buy it and it works for you, PLEASE give it a 5-star rating so that it will show up when other people are looking for the only Virginia Android application for Child Support.
If you have ANY problems with it, postpone your rating with Google. Instead, contact us directly and we will respond to you as quickly as we can. And if we can update the application to correct or improve something for everyone, we’ll do it!
We’re now off to work on an iPhone/iPad version. We’ll let everyone know as soon as it’s available.
Read on for more information on how the new Android application works…
More On How It Works
So how does it work? First, one general piece of help. For just about any field where you have information to enter or choices to make, you can press and hold on the description of the field and some help should pop up. That’s probably the fastest way to learn how to use everything!
A second important clue: if you want to start over at any time, press the “Clear” menu option.
There are two primary screens to look at. The first screen allows you to give real names to “Parent 1” and “Parent 2” if you want to. If you find yourself always changing them to something like “Mother” and “Father”, go to Menu->Settings and you can change the defaults.
Which Calculator To Use?
Next, we have to figure out which calculator you’ll be using. In Virginia, there are three possible choices. So select, the number of children that are involved in this support order. If the answer is one, the “Split” calculator is no longer a possibility.
With two or more children, you’ll need to identify if the children basically travel together between the parent houses. It’s not as common, but sometimes one parent will be with one or more children most of the time and the other parent will be with a different child or children most of the time. If the children DO NOT travel together, select how many children are with each parent. The “Split” calculator will be used in this case.
With only one child or with children traveling between the parent’s houses together, you’ll need to identify how many days each the parents are with the children. If one parent has 275 or more days, that parent is considered the “custodial” parent FOR SUPPORT CALCULATION purposes only (and the other parent is considered the “non-custodial” parent). In this case, the “Sole” calculator is used. Don’t get hung up on the name of the calculator. This has nothing to do with the “Legal Custody” or “Physical Custody” of the children, only with which calculator is used.
If both parents are with the children for more than 90 days, you’ll “Specify” the number of days with the first parent, and the “Shared” calculator will be used.
Detail for Each Parent
When you click on “Next Pg”, you’ll fill in the specific financial detail for each parent. The child support calculations can happen one of two ways. On the “Settings” screen, you can ask for “Continuous Calculations”. If you do, as soon as there is some income information for one parent, the calculation at the top of the screen will be updated. Be careful because there’s nothing in the program that will force you to complete the information for both parents. If you stop entering information too soon, you might think (incorrectly) you have a useful child support calculation amount.
If on the “Settings” screen you ask NOT to have “Continuous Calculations”, the second screen will start you with the information for the first parent. Fill in as much of the information as you need to and then press the button at the top saying you’re “Done” with the first parent. It will then take you to the second parent information screen. Fill in the information for parent 2 and then press the button at the top saying you’re “Done” with the second parent. Once you’ve said you’re “Done” with both parents, the top of the screen will show you the calculated amount of support.
You can always go back to either parent’s screen to change the amounts. The child support calculation will automatically update as you make these changes.
All amounts are entered in whole dollar amounts and are monthly. Here are the conversions to use if you have something other than monthly
- Yearly amount: Divide by 12
- Weekly amount: Multiply by 4.33
- Bi-weekly amount: Multiply by 2.167
- Semi-monthly amount: Multiply by 2
If a field is red, the amount will automatically be considered negative and the program won’t let you add the “-” sign. The only fields that you can make negative are the last two “Adjustment” fields for each parent. Otherwise, you’ll always enter every number as positive. The program will figure out the rest.
Once you see the calculated amount of support at the top of the screen, if you want to see the information laid out approximately the way it would look on the “official” forms, click on the “Details” button at the top of the screen. You can use that screen to copy the numbers to a support sheet if you want. As of now, we don’t have a way to save or print that form, but we’re working on it. (Most people don’t seem to have printers connected to their phones!)
Important note about updates: as a purchaser of this application, you are entitled to free updates as they are necessary to make sure the application is running correctly. However, if the guidelines change or significant additional features are added, you will be asked to purchase the next version of the program. What you’ve already purchased won’t stop working so you can keep using it BUT be aware that if the guidelines change, this program may not be producing the correct results!!! Be sure your version is up-to-date!
Don’t Forget Legal Advice!
This program was designed and tested by people who have been thoroughly trained in how to calculate child support. Please be sure you also are trained or check out the results with an attorney, mediator, or court official. Most importantly: This app is NOT a substitute for obtaining legal advice from an attorney who can provide legal advice as it relates to your specific situation. See our Divorce Financial Services for more information.