In New York child custody and support actions, a court will make decisions on the basis of the income of both parents. Many cases revolve around the question of what is considered income. There may be things besides your salary from your day job that a court may count as income.
The court could look at all sources of money
The court is really looking at the total value of what you may have access to or receive in a year. Your salary may only be the beginning of this inquiry. For example, you may have substantial investments and receive an income each year through dividends or interest. Both of these would be considered sources of income. In addition, the court will also count what you receive from side jobs.
The judge may assess your potential earnings
A judge may consider what they think your means are. For example, if you live a lifestyle far beyond what you otherwise could on your salary, the judge will think that you have more money somewhere. They may also look at what they think you could earn. For example, if you have multiple prestigious degrees, they might assess you based on your earnings potential as opposed to what you are actually earning. A judge could decide that you are intentionally earning less than you otherwise could and order you to pay more in child support or alimony. They will react negatively to what appears to be any effort to manipulate income to pay less. A family law attorney could provide further insight on these matters.