Mitton v. Mitton (2017)

In Mitton v. Mitton, the Arizona Court of Appeals vacated the family court’s improper calculation of child support in a situation where one child lived a parent full time while the parties shared equal parenting time of other children.

When the parties divorced, they shared equal parenting time of three children and Father owed Mother child support. 

Subsequently, Father petitioned to modify child support and the issue was how support should be calculated now that one of the parties children lived full time with Mother while the parties continued to share equal parenting time with the other two children.

After a trial, the family court directed the parties to submit proposed child support calculations. Mother submitted two worksheets, one for only the child who lived with her full time reflecting no parenting time with Father and one for the other two children with whom the parties exercised equal parenting time. Father objected and argued that the separate worksheets overstated his child support obligation and submitted one worksheet that included all three children. The trial court adopted Mother’s worksheets.

On appeal, Father argued that the Arizona Child Support Guidelines incrementally, not equally, increase support for multiple children. The Court of Appeals agreed and vacated the trial court’s calculation to be recalculated on one worksheet by adding together the total number of parenting days and dividing it by the number of children.