Court ordered payments to support a child fall into a specific category when evaluating the income of a parent. While child support is intended for the maintenance of a child's lifestyle - including food, housing, medical insurance and education - child support payments are not included when the parent's income is calculated for tax purposes.


Conveniently, child support is a form of income, and therefore can be included in the formula for mortgage qualification under certain circumstances. While it is not guaranteed, and each lender is different, the general practice requires that:

  • Applicant must provide proof of consistent history of child support payment for a period of anywhere from six months to three years;
  • Applicant must provide a copy of the court order that sets forth the child support order;
  • Applicant must prove child support is scheduled to continue for a period of at least three years.

Child support payments follow the child, not the parent. Some lenders are not inclined to take the risk that the custody arrangement might change and may not be willing to include support payments as income.


The United States government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides impoverished families with help to purchase staple food items. The requirements for qualification are outlined in a chart on the SNAP website. All sources of income are considered, including child support and alimony.


California's basic medical insurance plan calculates all sources of income for applicants, including child support. If you do not receive child support payments as ordered by the court or they do not come on a regular basis or in full, indicate this on your application.

If you have trouble collecting your child support payments, speak to a San Diego family law attorney today. We can enforce child support court orders to ensure you receive the money you need to care for your family.

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