When family law cases involve children, including situations where parents get divorced or child custody cases where parents are unmarried, child support will often be a factor. This form of support will ensure that children’s ongoing needs will be met. While parents may expect that child support will be paid by one parent to the other, they may not be fully aware of what child support is meant to address and what types of expenses will be included. By working with a family law attorney, a parent can make sure they understand how the law applies in their situation, and they can ensure that child support orders will fully address their children’s needs.
Basic Child Support and Additional Expenses
Under Illinois law, a statutory formula is used to calculate what is known as a “basic child support obligation” based on the amount of income earned by both parents and the number of children they share. This amount is meant to provide for children’s basic, everyday needs, including making sure they have the necessary food and clothing and providing them with a place to live. After a basic support obligation is calculated, it will be divided between the parents based on the amount that each parent contributes to the couple’s combined income.
In addition to the basic support obligation, parents may also need to determine how to divide other child-related expenses. There are multiple types of expenses that may need to be addressed, and these will also generally be divided based on each parent’s percentage of their combined income. Applicable expenses may include:
Health care costs – Most of the time, parents will need to make arrangements to ensure that children have medical insurance coverage. This may be done by including children on one parent’s employer-provided healthcare plan. The monthly premiums for this coverage may be divided between the parents. Parents may also need to divide other ongoing health costs for children, such as medications or expenses related to psychological treatment.
Child care – To ensure that a parent can maintain employment, children may need to attend daycare or receive care from a nanny or other provider. Parents will usually be required to divide the costs of employment-related child care.
Extracurricular activities – Children may participate in multiple types of school programs and other activities, such as sports, scouting, dance classes, music lessons, or gymnastics. A child support order may state that parents will divide the expenses related to these activities, and if necessary, it may limit the amount that a parent will be required to pay each year.
Contact Our Wheaton Child Support Attorneys
At NN Legal Group, we can help you understand how child support may be calculated in your divorce or child custody case, including how you and your child’s other parent will divide the various expenses involved in raising the child. We will work to protect your rights and financial interests while making sure your child will have the necessary resources to address their ongoing needs. To set up a complimentary consultation, contact our Bloomingdale child support lawyers at 630-474-0925.