What Child Support Does and Doesn’t Cover

Child support remains the primary way that parents can effectively care for their children’s needs following a divorce. While the money does belong to the child, their custodial parent will be responsible for properly allocating the payments that they receive. 

However, parents who have to pay will often struggle to calculate what is and isn’t part of their child support payment. From surprise expenses to field trips and stays in hotels, there are a lot of things that you don’t think could be part of your child support payments but likely are. In this quick guide, you’ll see what can be part of your child support coverage and what isn’t. 

What Child Support Does Cover

First, it is worth looking into what child support Las Vegas does cover, creating a baseline for how much a parent will have to pay. The additions to this section will be part of any child support payment plan, but there can be some exceptions. These core additions to calculating child support can include child custody and:

Basic Necessities 

These are the essentials that every child needs, and it is the parent’s responsibility to make sure that their child is well-fed, housed, and clothed. So, anything that contributes to your child’s home, food, and clothing will be part of the child support coverage. So buying well-fitting clothes for all seasons is a basic necessity, even if they are of a more expensive variety. 

Furthermore, child support payments can go towards mortgage or rent payments, ensuring that your child has a place to live. Payments can also go to cover groceries and school meals that the children need. 

Finally, another part of basic necessities can include transportation expenses for the child, such as car payments, bus fares, and fuel. Briefly, any cost associated with transporting children from home to school, activities, or family visits will be part of the payment. 

Health Care 

Next is an expense that many states do not include in their calculations: health care. However, it is very common that most child support Las Vegas orders include that parents pay a certain amount towards a child’s medical expenses. 

This calculation is often inaccurate, as it never includes out of pocket hospital visits, or serious procedures that are not covered by insurance. Monthly calculations will often include a certain amount that parents will have to pay for, which is often enough for insurance or other treatments that the child is on. 

When calculating the cost of insurance, the court will also check which parent is better suited to take on better insurance for their child. After the court decides on the right parent, that cost will then be added to the overall Nevada child support payment. 

If a child does happen to suffer from a serious incident that requires urgent, out-of-pocket care, then this will fall under the extra expenses category. Extra expenses are a gray area that leaves the final decisions to the parents. 

Child Care 

While most states do not include child care, this is an essential service that most parents include by themselves. Since most parents also manage their work with raising their children, child care can be seen as a necessity in most cases. So, even if most states will not include this by default, it is very likely that your spouse will have this as part of the overall child support plan. Therefore, you will also have to add this to your calculations as well. 

Education Expenses 

Education and tuition expenses will also be a part of your calculations, which include various things surrounding it. Many parents wish for their children to study in a private school, with most citing religious reasons. Therefore, at least till the age of 18, child support payments will also have to include education expenses for children. 

However, if tuition is not part of the initial calculations, for whatever reason, custodial parents can still use child support money to pay for education. Along with tuition expenses, the tuition expenses will also include supplies that they might need, transportation, or even field trips or extracurricular. 

Of course, you might be wondering if child support payments can also extend to college tuition. Although the age at which the law considers an individual to be an adult is 18, some states may still require parents to take up the responsibility of paying for their children’s college tuition or other post-secondary education. 

However, there are various factors that a court will consider before it makes the final decision. These can include the financial independence of the child, what expectations the parents have for the child, the financial status of the parents, and if there are alternative funding options available for the child. 

What It Doesn’t Cover

When a parent is ever wondering if a something is part of their child support payment, it is usually because of an unexpected expense. Usually these can be medical expenses that are not covered by insurance, which is why the custodial parent will insist that this be part of the child support payments. However, any extra expenses that incur can usually be split amongst both parents, but it will come down to a case to case basis. 

On the other hand, surprise recreational expenses are a lot less likely to be part of child support payments. A stay at a hotel, an overnight field trip, or any other recreational expense will not be included in Nevada child support payments. For instance, since the field trip is an optional activity that could not reasonably be mentioned at the time of the court order, most states will require both parents to split this expense. 

Consider Speaking to a Professional Divorce Attorney 

When calculating child support payments, it is essential that parents consider talking to a local divorce attorney who can help them better consider their case and child custody situation. Furthermore, they can also defend parents in the event that an ex is asking for too much in payments, as they can track any frivolous expenses. 

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