The Maricopa Guidelines were established by the Maricopa County Family Court with jurisdiction over Phoenix, Arizona and the surrounding region (Ellman, 1999). The guidelines were based upon the recommendations of the American Law Institute (ALI) in which to be entitled to an award, the marital duration must be more than five years and the lower earner’s post-dissolution income not greater than 75% of the higher earner’s income. The guidelines did not distinguish between child and childless marriages.
Maricopa followed the ALI recommendation of generating a guideline amount by multiplying the difference between the party’s gross incomes by a marital ‘duration factor’ (Ellman, 1999). The length of the marriage was the primary factor for determining the amount of the income transfer. The marital duration factor was equal to the number of years married, multiplied by . 015, with . 5 as a maximum value. Child support would also be ordered.
The Maricopa guideline was calculated for the current study by multiplying the difference between the partner’s pre-divorce gross incomes, stated in the final decree, by the marital duration factor with a maximum of . 5. Child support was then subtracted or added when computing income-to-needs ratios. Marriages that were shorter than five years were calculated with only the child support amount, because they did not qualify for an additional income transfer.
Additionally, if the lower income was more than 75% of the higher income, then a monetary adjustment was not calculated and the income-to-needs ratios were calculated with just the child support amount. Premarital security agreements (PSA) Premarital Security Agreements (Ertman, 1998) contended that an award of 30% of the gross income differential between spouses be transferred from the “primary wage earner” for a duration of half the length of the marriage, plus the difference between 18 and the age of the youngest minor child.
The total “debt” was calculated by multiplying the annual payment by the duration. To calculate the amount, the difference in the pre-divorce gross incomes, as provided in the final decree, was multiplied by . 30. Child support payments were then deducted. Kansas guidelines The Kansas guidelines stated that for parties with minor children, where a child support award was also made, additional income should be transferred by calculating 20% of the difference between the partner’s gross incomes (Thompson, 2001).
The Kansas formula was calculated by subtracting the couple’s pre-divorce gross incomes prior to subtracting child support, and then 20% of the difference was awarded to the lower-earning household. Child support was then subtracted or added when calculating income-to-needs ratios. Income sharing Rutheford (1990) proposed that families equally share financial incomes based on the number of people to support.
The calculation was determined by adding the pre-divorce gross incomes of the partners and then dividing by the number of people to be supported (per capita income). Income sharing would continue for an unspecified number of years. Each person in the household was allocated their appropriate share to determine the total income distributed to the post-divorce households. Child support awards were not subtracted from or added to the incomes.