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Child Support and Other Court-Mandated Expenses

Posted on in Child Support

NOTE: As of July 2017, the law governing child support in Illinois has changed. Please see our Child Support page for more information.

Illinois Statutory Guidelines set a minimum percentage of a parent’s net income that must go towards child support, but judges are free to exceed this minimum. Net income is the amount of earnings that remain after basic deductions have been factored in, including federal and state income tax; Social Security or mandatory retirement contributions; health insurance premiums and necessary medical expenses; union dues; preexisting child support or alimony obligations; repayment of debts necessary for producing of income; and expenses that benefit the child and the other parent. The minimum percentage of the remaining net income that must be paid to support children ranges from 20 percent for one child, to 50 percent for six or more children.

Payment for Additional Expenses

In addition to these amounts, judges can also order that extra expenses beyond the standard child support obligation must be paid by the non-custodial parent. These additional categories of spending for the child’s welfare can be either added to the child support or included within the standard amount. The types of expenses most frequently seen in Illinois family courts are children’s health insurance, as well as medical and childcare expenses.

If a parent’s employer or group health plan provides the option for children to be covered under his or her policy, Illinois law requires the parent to take advantage of this option, or procure health insurance for the child elsewhere. If the parent fails to have the child covered under his or her plan, he or she may be forced to pay premiums or medical expenses to the custodial parent, if he or she would otherwise have been covered by the employer or group plan. By virtue of the same power, Illinois family judges may also order a noncustodial parent to pay for medical expenses that are not covered by insurance. If you and the other parent are interested in coming to a private agreement about how your child’s medical expenses should be shared between you, be sure to enlist in the help of an attorney who can make sure that any deal that you reach is fair and legally binding.

Daycare expenses, on the other hand, are not fair game for judges to order a non-custodial parent to pay, since they are presumed to be included in the amount ordered. Illinois judges may not require a parent who pays child support to pay daycare expenses on top of the support, and they cannot enforce private agreements that parents may come to about how to split daycare costs. However, especially in the context of skyrocketing daycare costs, judges find a way to work around this gap in their authority, by simply ordering that non-custodial parents must pay larger amounts of child support, in order to sufficiently cover daycare expenses.

Contact a Skilled Attorney

If you are currently involved in a divorce or a child support matter, having a knowledgeable DuPage County family law lawyer at your side can help ensure that your interests, and your child’s interests are protected. Contact Davi Law Group, LLC for advice and representation on your child support case.

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