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Child support and what it covers

As some Connecticut residents may know, child support is meant for more than just essentials. In order to eliminate confusion and define more clearly what child support entails, guidelines have been established in each state to address the subject. Providing for housing, food and clothing may involve using child support for expenses such as rent, mortgage payments and utilities. Expenses associated with education such as child care after school, day care and during vacation breaks from school are covered. The expenses associated with a vehicle needed to transport the child are covered and may include fees to keep the car on the road, such as licensing fees, gasoline, insurance or car payments.

In most cases, one of the divorced parents carries the child on their medical insurance. However, extra medical expenses not covered by insurance may be paid for by child support such as eyeglasses, braces for teeth, co-pays and deductibles. Uninsured medical expenses are frequently split between parents.

Textbooks, tuition, uniforms, meals at school and other expenses related to the child's education may be paid for by child support. School and after-school activities such as the cost for a child to participate in sports programs, camp and other activities are included. In some states, college costs, including tuition and books, may be incorporated if the child is attending the institution full time.

Child support is important for the maintenance and care of one's children, and conflicts concerning support may be difficult. A parent needing to obtain child support or adjust the amount received may benefit from an attorney's advice. A parent who is paying child support and has an adverse financial setback such as a loss of employment may also wish to speak to an attorney about petitioning the court to alter the amount of child support paid.

Source: Findlaw, "What Does Child Support Cover?", December 24, 2014

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