How Arizona Calculates the Days Each Parent Gets to Spend with Their Child

Fighting for having privileges to see your child is tough. There are many reasons why parents get divorced, and it’s tough when there are children. Whoever gets full custody, one will fight to get time to spend with their child. Within the state of Arizona, there are guidelines that determine how many days each parent gets to spend with their child, and it includes child support. These guidelines are:

  1. Gross income
  2. Health insurance cost for the children only and which party is paying for it
  3. Child care cost and which party is paying for it
  4. Parenting days

how arizona calculates the days each parent gets to spend with their child

The first three points are mainly focused on child support, and the fourth point determines the period of time each parent gets with their child.

The Arizona Child Support Guidelines explain that calculating parenting time days are as follows “For purposes of calculating parenting time days, only the time spent by a child with the noncustodial parent is considered. The time that the child is in school or childcare is not.” What this means is the main focus that the courts and child custody lawyer are concerned with is determining the period of time the noncustodial parent is allowed to spend time with his or her child.

Child Custody Lawyers | AZ Family Law Lawyers

Which parent spends more time with the child when they were together? Who takes care of them? Those two questions are considered very closely. The child custody lawyer is looking at the gross income of both parents, and if the children have health insurance and who is paying for it. Basically, who is financially supporting the children. It’s important who is finally supporting the children, but what more important, what weighs more, is the amount of time each parent spends with the children. The following list is a more detailed guideline that explains how the time each parent spends with their child is determined:

  • 12 hours or more = one day.
  • 6 to 11 hours = ½ day.
  • 3 to 5 hours = 1/4 day.
  • determining child custodyLess than 3 hours may count as 1/4 day if meals or other expenses are incurred.

The time the child is at school or daycare does not count. Neither parent goes to school with the child. However, there are situations when courts overlook this rule. If you volunteer with school activities and/or go to every PTO meeting, the courts might include those hours.

Once each parent knows how many hours they spend with their child each day, adding the total number of days during the year is next. Below is another specific adjustment chart that helps determines how much time you spend with your child for the whole year:

  • 0 – 3 // 0
  • 4 – 20 // .012
  • 21 – 38 // .031
  • 39 – 57 // .050
  • 58 – 72 // .085
  • 73 – 87 // .105
  • 88 – 115 // .161
  • 116 – 129 // .195
  • 130 – 142 // .253
  • 143 – 152 // .307
  • 153 – 162 // .362
  • 163 – 172 // .422
  • 173 – 182 // .486

parents going to court for child custodyThe calculated time is based on a range of days of each parent spends time with. That helps the court and family lawyer in Mesa establish a clear idea of your parenting days. Depending on the financial situation and parenting days each parent hold for their children will determine who will get full custody and how much time the other parent will get to spend with their child. There other guidelines, but this the starting.

Arizona has guidelines for child support and how much time a parent gets to spend with their child because it sets a standard. Again, it’s tough fighting for privileges to see and spend time with your child. If you have any questions, concerns or want to consult with a family/child custody lawyer in Mesa, contact us HERE, or gives us a call at 480-833-8000.

Mesa Location:

1731 West Baseline Rd., Suite #100
Mesa, AZ 85202

Office: (480) 448-9800

Glendale Location:

20325 N 51st Avenue Suite #134, Building 5
Glendale, AZ 85308

Office: (480) 509-0955

Tucson Location:

2 East Congress St., Suite #900-6A
Tucson, AZ 85701

Office: (520) 441-1450

Avondale Location:

12725 W. Indian School Rd., Ste E, #101
Avondale, AZ 85392
Office: (623) 469-6603


Written by: Candace Kallen
December 22, 2016.