Parents have a legal duty to provide financially for their children. In the case of single parents and those who have gone through a divorce, child support orders ensure this obligation is met and that the child in question has what they need to thrive. While the focus in determining child support amounts often centers around what each parent earns, it is important to give special consideration to the total expenses involved in raising the child. With the high costs of healthcare today, out-of-pocket medical expenses need to be included in these calculations.
Regardless of whether you and the other parent are on amicable terms, it is important to have a formal child support order in place. Not only does this help in making sure any current or past due amounts owed are paid, but it also helps to ensure you get the maximum amount to which you are entitled.
When filing for child support through the Illinois courts, you will need to fill out a Support Obligation Worksheet. This lists each parent’s income (if unemployed, the court will consider their skills, past wages, and their earning potential), as well as some of the child’s basic expenses, including health insurance. Generally, if one parent has health insurance through their employer, the child can be covered through this policy. While the costs of the child’s premiums will be divided between each parent, it is also important to calculate out of pocket costs. This includes:
The Illinois Department of Health and Family Services (HFS) offers a child support estimator to calculate the amount to which you may be entitled. However, to ensure you are getting the maximum amount you need to provide for your child, it is important to include other medical expenses outside of basic health insurance costs. These can add up to significant amounts and are likely to include:
The Women’s Divorce and Family Law Group is dedicated to ensuring you and your children are provided for. To discuss how we can help in your case, contact our Chicago child support attorneys today to schedule a consultation.
There are many factors to consider when contemplating divorce, and a pre-divorce planning session can help you begin to plan for a divorce. Please contact the professionals at the Women’s Divorce & Family Law Group by calling (312) 585-6604 or clicking here to schedule a consultation.