Define “income” for calculating child support

Sometimes I have clients that are trying to understand what streams of money or resources is used when determining child support. The question can be complicated based on where the resources come from and a factual determination may need to be made to give a definitive answer. The Texas Family code defines income as follows:

Sec. 154.062. NET RESOURCES.

(a) The court shall calculate net resources for the purpose of determining child support liability as provided by this section.
(b) Resources include:
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  • 100 percent of all wage and salary income and other compensation for personal services (including commissions, overtime pay, tips, and bonuses);
  • interest, dividends, and royalty income;
  • self-employment income;
  • net rental income (defined as rent after deducting operating expenses and mortgage payments, but not including noncash items such as depreciation); and
  • all other income actually being received, including severance pay, retirement benefits, pensions, trust income, annuities, capital gains, social security benefits other than supplemental security income, United States Department of Veterans Affairs disability benefits other than non-service-connected disability pension benefits, as defined by 38 U.S.C. Section 101(17), unemployment benefits, disability and workers’ compensation benefits, interest income from notes regardless of the source, gifts and prizes, spousal maintenance, and alimony.


There are some limitations, the following items are excluded by the family code:

  1. return of principal or capital;
  2. accounts receivable;
  3. benefits paid in accordance with the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program or another federal public assistance program; or
  4. payments for foster care of a child.

Contact us for more information

Please see Child Support

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