Child Support

In Montana, Child Support orders may be established by the District Court, or by the Montana Child Support Enforcement  Division  (CSED).  Individuals who receive public assistance are automatically referred to CSED. Individuals who do not receive public assistance may apply for CSED services.

District Courts and CSED follow Montana laws (MCA) and Administrative Rules governing both parents’ duty of support to a child. Amounts are determined to be reasonable or necessary for the child's support, and without regard to marital misconduct. Relevant factors include:

  • the financial resources of the child;
  • the financial resources of the parents;
  • the standard of living that the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved;
  • the physical and emotional condition of the child and the child's educational and medical needs;
  • the age of the child;
  • the cost of day care for the child;
  • any parenting plan that is ordered or decided upon; and
  • the needs of any person, other than the child, whom either parent is legally obligated to support.

For additional information, link to Common Questions about Child and Medical Support Orders in Montana, from Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA).

Child Support Calculation Tools

PLEASE NOTE: The interactive forms, worksheets and other resources listed on this page are intended to assist in individuals in determining appropriate child support amounts because they are involved in one of the following proceedings in a Montana District Court:

  • Petition for Dissolution with Children;
  • Petition for Parenting Plan; or
  • Modification of Child Support Order (from a previous Dissolution with Children or Parenting Plan case).

The online calculator and/or worksheet listed below may not be the best resource for every case. Please review the information carefully. If you have doubts or questions, we strongly recommend you contact a lawyer or CSED for assistance in determining child support.

Montana Child Support Guidelines Packet, (including Guidelines and Worksheet) from the Child Support Enforcement Division for Montana Department of Health and Human Services

Montana Online Child Support Calculator, from Montana Legal Services Association

Forms (Enforcement and Review of Child Support)

Petition for Judicial Review of Montana Child Support Enforcement Division Decision to Montana District Court

Petition for Contempt of Court for Failure to Pay Support Packet

CSED Forms

Non-Public Assistance Child Support Application, from the Child Support Enforcement Division for Montana Department of Health and Human Services

Legal Resources in Montana

Lawyer Referral Information Service, from the State Bar of Montana (Phone assistance is also available at (406) 449-6577.)

Apply for Legal Services, from Montana Legal Service Association (serving low-income Montana with pressing civil legal needs)

Montana Legal Services HelpLine and Intake, available Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm: 1-800-666-6899

MCA Title 40, Ch. 4. Termination of Marriage, Child Custody, Support

MCA Title 40, Ch. 4, Part 2. Support, Custody, Visitation, and Related Provisions

MCA Title 40, Ch. 5, Pt. 10. Uniform Interstate Family Support Act

MCA Title 40, Ch. 5. Enforcement of Support

ARM Title 37, Ch. 62, Subchapter 1. Montana Child Support Guidelines

Child Support: Information and Forms, from MontanaLawHelp.org

Common Questions about Child and Medical Support Orders in Montana, from Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA).

CSED Forms, links to the Child Support Enforcement Division for Montana Department of Health and Human Services

Guide to Services, from the Child Support Enforcement Division for Montana Department of Health and Human Services

Introduction to Family Law in Montana, prepared by Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA) and approved by the Montana Supreme Court