When parents go through a divorce in Pennsylvania, their children are at the forefront of many of the decisions that are made during the divorce. Parents may focus on the child custody and parenting time decisions, which dictate when they will see their children. However, there is another important aspect of the decisions regarding the children and that is child support.
Child support is a monthly payment made by one parent to the other to help ensure that both parents are contributing to the financial needs of the children. There are many expenses that parents incur on behalf of their children. On a basic level, they need to provide a home, they need to make sure they have food and are fed properly and they need to make sure they have clothing that is appropriate for the various seasons.
These costs are paid for through basic child support obligations. The amount a parent pays is dependent on the monthly income of both parents and also the number of children they have with each other. If parents share parenting time equally, it can affect payments, but for the most part, basic support is based on the child support guidelines.
Childcare and healthcare costs affect child support
As parents know, there are more costs associated with raising children besides the basic needs. Some of these costs will affect the child support obligations. These costs are:
- Costs paid for health insurance premiums for minor children
- Uninsured medical costs of the children, which can include co-pays, deductibles and other uninsured costs for reasonable medical care for the children
- Childcare costs that parents incur because of their jobs or education
Child support payments are an important part of the divorce process for parents in Pennsylvania. The calculations can seem fairly straight forward, but there are variables that can affect the outcome. It is important to understand these variables and consulting with experienced attorneys may be beneficial.