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These expenses are not covered by standard child support

If you are in the middle of a divorce process, you understand how difficult it can be to cope with the myriads of changes that are happening in both your financial and your personal life. That makes it easy to lose track of some of the details, such as exactly which expenses your child support agreement is supposed to cover. Regardless of which side of that agreement you are on, it is important to realize that there are many regular day-to-day expenses and milestone goals that children will need help funding outside of the calculations offered by child support.

Popular expenses not covered by child support

  • Extracurricular activities, including both sports and arts-related activities, as well as any private club memberships
  • Supplies for those activities, including sports equipment, musical instruments, and specialized performance clothing
  • College tuition and room expenses, including books
  • Vacations and travel
  • Entertainment, including both goods like DVDs and services like movies, concerts and so on
  • Medical care, including medications that your child needs after the divorce is final

The good news is that while the last item, medical care, is not covered in initial child support calculations, Florida does have a sample worksheet that allows for the reporting and calculation of those expenses. This does make it easier to track and verify medical expenses that are not covered by insurance to make things equitable between the parents, but it does not cover the variety of other situations where child support does not anticipate expenses.

Different couples handle these expenses in different ways. Sometimes one parent will volunteer to take charge of certain expenses if the other parent takes up different burdens. Otherwise, expense sharing plans can easily be worked into co-parenting agreements if both parties can come to terms about how the issues will be dealt with when they arise. By putting a plan into writing, it is often possible to avoid future conflicts.

How to deal with expenses in a parenting plan

Most parenting plans that couples use as they divorce are fairly comprehensive because the conventional wisdom surrounding them is that more detail leads to less conflict later. That means that they not only spell out each item that the co-parents are anticipating decisions about, but they also delegate some tasks to one parent and some tasks to another. Working together to include information about how expenses will be split and folding that into the plan is just one more way to effectively sideline conflict down the road. Speaking with a qualified family law attorney can help you form a workable plan.

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