Nebraska Child Support & Parenting Time Calculations

Nebraska child support is based on parenting time percentages

Nebraska uses a parenting time totals in its child support formula to determine the amount of child support in your divorce case.

Besides income, parenting time totals are a key part of the Nebraska child support formula. Your parenting time directly affects your child support, whether you pay or receive.

Most parenting time totals are estimates (and thus incorrect)

Nebraska attorneys and judges often rely on parenting time estimates only, even if they are incorrect, because counting total hours is tedious and time consuming. Divorcing parents often rely on these estimates as well.

Using estimates means your parenting time totals are wrong when compared to your actual parenting time schedule. This means your child support amount will not be fair or exact.

How to calculate parenting time instead of relying on estimates

To calculate parenting time, the easiest and most accurate way is to use software. Without software, you're forced to count each night for a whole year, which is error-prone when you include alternating holidays, summer break, and any changes to the schedule throughout the year.

The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Parenting Time Now

Using software, you can also tweak your schedule to see how even little changes affect your total parenting time, and you can see how your parenting time changes each year due to holidays and other events.

You can also track what actually happens, and show how much time you've actually received for any period of time. Historical information is a powerful tool when you request a child support modification or when you request more parenting time.

Fast facts on child custody and child support in Nebraska

In any divorce, Nebraska family courts award custody of the children to one or both parents. Custody is divided into legal custody and physical custody. The total parenting time factors into the child support formula for both sole and joint custody.

Nebraska sole physical custody: The children reside with and are supervised by the residential parent, while the other parent is entitled to scheduled visitations. In Nebraska, sole physical custody is given to the parent with whom the children spend the most time with.

Nebraska shared physical custody: Each parent has significant periods of physical custody, which allows them frequent and continuing contact with their children. Nebraska law outlines shared custody as any arrangement in which the child has regular and continuing contact with both parents. Shared physical custody is the most common form of custody awarded by family courts in Nebraska. Parenting time does not have to be equally divided to qualify for shared physical custody.   

Nebraska child support formula and parenting time adjustment

Nebraska family courts use formulas that consider both parents' incomes and the needs of the child to arrive at a monthly child support amount.  A parenting time adjustment is given based on shared custody.

Sole custody formula: The total income between the two parents is put into the formula and then a basic monthly support is figured by using the Nebraska Child Support Guidelines. Certain deductions are allowed when figuring total income. To be considered a sole custody case, the non-residential parent spends fewer than 110 days per year, or less than 30 percent of the time, with the children. No parenting time credit is applied toward child support. The residential parent receives child support from the non-residential parents according to Nebraska law.

Joint custody formula: In Nebraska, when a family court orders joint physical custody, each parent must host the children for at least 142 days per year. If the non-residential parent is scheduled for parenting time from 110 to 141 days, the court may agree to a reduction of child support. This decision is made on a case-by-case basis.

Examples of sole child custody and Nebraska child support

Consider the hypothetical case of Robert and Mary. Robert's adjusted income is $4,000 per month, while Mary's adjusted monthly income is $2,400. They have two children.

See how the child support amounts change in these examples:

  • Scenario #1: Robert is the non-residential parent in this sole custody case, and is scheduled to host the children for less than 110 days per year. He is not eligible for a parenting time credit. He pays $1,105 in child support each month to Mary.
  • Scenario #2: Mary is the non-residential parent and hosts the children for less than 110 days per year. She pays $649 in child support to Robert.
In Nebraska sole custody cases, the non-residential parent pays child support to the residential parent, regardless of income.
Examples of the shared custody formula in Nebraska child support

Consider the hypothetical case of Robert and Mary. Robert's adjusted income is $4,000 per month, while Mary's adjusted monthly income is $2,400. They have two children.

See how the child support amounts change in these examples:

  • Scenario #1: Robert hosts the children for 110 days or 30 percent, just over the minimum to qualify for joint physical custody. This qualifies him for a parenting time adjustment. He pays $852 child support per month to Mary.
  • Scenario #2: Robert hosts the children for 143 days, or 40 percent. He pays $632 in child support to Mary.
  • Scenario #3: Robert hosts the children for 164 days, or 45 percent. He pays $473 in child support to Mary.
  • Scenario #4: If Robert and Mary agreed to a 50/50 split, or 182 days, he pays $342 in child support. This is because he is the higher earner.
If Mary were the non-residential parent, she would pay child support to Robert, and be eligible for a parenting time adjustment based on the total number of overnights with the children.
Other factors in the Nebraska child support formula

Nebraska's child support formula uses the following information to calculate your monthly amounts for shared custody child support:

Eligible children: The obligation for a parent to provide child support for a child ends at the age of majority, which in the state of Nebraska is 19 years old.

Gross earnings: Gross earnings are established based on tax records and current pay stubs. Nebraska law requires the use of both parents' incomes from the equivalent of one full-time job to determine a child support amount.

Specific deductions: There are some deductions allowed by Nebraska family courts that allow an adjustment of the income, including health insurance premiums for the children, support for other children and child care expenses, for example.

How accurate child support helps your children

Paying accurate child support helps your children in several ways, primarily because it ensures their financial needs are met.

Here are some other reasons why accurate overnight numbers help you, the other parent and your children:

  • It provides a fair way to determine your child support amounts
  • It guarantees the child support amount reflects each parent's responsibilities
  • It allows for modifications if your actual time and scheduled time are different
  • It is compliant with Nebraska law

Your financial obligations to your children don't end with divorce, so whether you are paying or receiving child support, you owe it to your children to pay or receive the proper amount.

Top 5 things to remember about Nebraska child support and overnights

To ensure you are paying or receiving the right amount of child support in Nebraska, remember these 5 things:

The child support amount is determined using guidelines established under state law in

  1.  Nebraska Child Support Guidelines are now found at Nebraska Court Rules Chapter 4, Article 2, 4-201 to 4-220. The child support formula figures out a basic child support obligation based on the income from both parents.
  2. Nebraska family courts favor joint physical custody over sole physical custody.
  3. Sole physical custody means that the non-residential parent is scheduled for fewer than 110 days with the children per year. There is no parenting time credit given in sole custody cases.
  4. A parenting time credit is given in shared custody cases to non-residential parents when both parents provide care for their children for 143 days or more. The higher the parenting time total, the lower the child support amount.
  5. Nebraska family courts can include a parenting time credit for non-residential parents who host their children between 110 and 142 days, but it is determined on a case-by-case basis.
  6. The non-residential parent pays child support to the residential parent. In the case of an approximate 50/50 split in parenting time, the higher earner pays child support to the lower earner.

Use Custody X Change software to create a custody schedule that will quickly calculate the total parenting time for the Nebraska child support formula.

As you negotiate what kind of joint custody schedule will best fit your needs, the software will accurately calculate your parenting time percentage.


The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Time

The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Parenting Time Now