Raising children is expensive. Paying for a child’s everyday necessities like food, clothing and medical care adds up quickly. And then there are extraneous expenses—things that are not essential for survival, but are nonetheless important for a child’s development and happiness.
When a child’s parents are no longer together, one parent is often required to send child support payments to the other. Many parents mistakenly believe that child support can only be used for a child’s bare-bones essentials. In fact, child support payments can cover a range of childrearing expenses. These are three things covered by child support that you may not have realized.
Many children enjoy participating in extracurricular activities like sports, camps or artistic endeavors. Even though these activities are not considered essential for a child’s development, they can provide much-needed enrichment that lasts a lifetime. When extracurricular activities require fees or equipment, parents can use child support to pay for them.
Transporting a child between school, daycare and home isn’t always cheap. Child support payments can help supplement the cost of gas, car payments, insurance, maintenance and fare for public transportation. Child support can also pay for travel when a child is visiting a noncustodial parent or other relative who lives far away.
While some parents consider entertainment a luxury, many courts have ruled that children are entitled to various forms of entertainment. This does not necessarily mean video games and cartoons. Entertainment can also include books, games and art supplies, and all of these can be covered by child support.