Child support in Ukraine.

Child support in Ukraine. The amount of child support in Ukraine is linked to sustenance levels, which vary for different groups. As the official sustenance levels increased from 1 July 2018, the size of payments for children of divorced parents also went up.

How Ukrainians pay child support

In nearly 100% of cases children remain with the mother after the divorce, thus fathers have to support their offspring financially. 50/50 parental arrangements are unheard of in Ukraine. Just like in western countries 30 years ago, courts are routinely assigning 100% care of the kids to mothers. The system has simply never been reformed from this habitual order.

Moreover, it’s not unusual for fathers to never see kids after the divorce. This is why Ukrainian women are so scared that a husband may leave her, which means she would have to bring up the kids alone. With low Ukrainian wages, it’s not an easy task.

Why fathers are not seeing the kids? The social culture doesn’t deem it necessary for fathers to see their babies after the divorce. Even during the marriage kids are assigned to be the mother’s responsibility and fathers rarely engage with youngsters, Ukrainian wives complain.

The system of alimony

The amount of child support payments, which is called “alimony” in Ukraine, is linked to the sustenance level. The family code states that the amount of maintenance for kids cannot be less than 50% of that figure, explains.

  • If the divorced parent has only one child, the payments should not exceed 1/4 of his income.
  • 2 kids – 1/3 part of the sum.
  • 3 and more children – 1/2 of the earnings.

In other words, there is the bottom limit for payments, but the upper limit takes in consideration wages of the parent who lives separately. The laws dictating how much of his income the non-resident parent has to pay to the one caring for the offspring also haven’t changed for a long time. 1/4 to 1/2 of income to pay as alimony may seem harsh to foreigners, where the system of calculations is more complex.

The child support is paid until kids turn 18.

From 1 July 2018 the sustenance level had been raised from 1,700 hryvnya (USD $65) to 1,777 hryvnya ($67) on July 1, 2018.

  • The sustenance level of kids under 6 has risen to 1,559 hryvnya (USD $59.4) from 1,492 hryvnya (USD $57). Thus, the payment for 1 child from newborns to 5-year-olds will be $30 per month.
  • For kids aged between 6 and 18 years: from 1860 hryvnya ($71) to 1,944 hryvnya ($74); the alimony amount increases to $37/month.

You may think these amounts are ridiculous, but there is a problem to collect alimony from fathers even for such miniscule payments. And if you think how big are Ukrainian wages (the average monthly wage in April 2018 was only $323), that’s 10% of a person’s 30-day income.

How child support in Ukraine is calculated.

Alimony is calculated depending on the income of the separately living parent (from 1/4 of the salary for 1 child to 1/2 of the salary for 3 or more kids), but it cannot be less than 50% of the current sustenance level in Ukraine for the relevant age group.

Harsher penalties for parents who don’t pay

There are penalties for parents who don’t pay the financial support due. But currently it’s quite hard for mothers to get the alimony if the father is not willing to pay. This is about to change, even though the system of allocation of care isn’t being questioned as yet.

Recently Ukrainian parliamentarians approved the second draft of the law that should improve protection of mothers with children.

Once the new law is in place, there will be harsher penalties for parents who don’t pay their dues. The law also allows for longer periods during which the carer is allowed to seek retribution.

If a person is skipping on paying alimony, the first time it happens he could be hit with up to 3 months of community service.

The second time, the parent could be sentenced to 240-360 hours of labour through the administrative court. The people who try to avoid such orders may be arrested for up to 10 days. The ones who don’t get to their senses after such punishments will be committing a crime, punishable for up to 2 years of jail.

Regardless of the administrative or criminal punishment, the parent will still have to pay the alimony due.

If the child is ill, the period of non-payment that causes prosecution will be lowered to 3 months. Such parents will be also unable to leave Ukraine, their driver licenses could be suspended. If they had a gun license, it will be also suspended.

In addition, there will be fines to people who skip on paying child support, in accordance with the following gradations:

  • If the amount due exceeds 20% of the yearly payment;
  • If the amount exceeds 30% of 2-year payments;
  • If the amount exceeds 50% of 3-year payments.

The new law will also provide for mechanisms to arrest the debtor’s finances.

Family breakdowns are a problem in all countries. But in Ukraine it can substantially affect the mother’s ability to live a good life, especially if the father doesn’t support his children financially.

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“In nearly 100% of cases children remain with the mother after the divorce”

Need a marriage contract which clearly state – in the case of divorce:
1. Children will stay with the father
2. There will be no place for any official financial demand from the formal wife

If that not possible in a certain country for some reason, then do the full progress in a different one.


Robert, I don’t know what country you are from, but in the US the overriding principle for child custody and support is “in the best interest of the child.” The courts can and will set aside contracts that don’t meet that standard, so it doesn’t matter what you’ve signed.

Roger W Oakes
Roger W Oakes

Elena, I certainly wanted to validate what you have said in multiple places on this blog. Women really appreciate a man who truly cares about and interacts with her children as the typical males of the culture deem that as a woman’s duty. The highest points of my Russian experience were when I arrived at the airport and meeting her and her son personally at the airport and took a long taxi ride back to her apartment. And the other time she became so enamored of me that she was literally climbing all over my body, was when I was… Read more »