Divorce – Do It Right

Divorce – Do It Right

Child Support: 5 Ways To Appropriately Spend Your Child's Support Payments

by Joyce Diaz

You're finally divorced and the courts have granted you primary custody of your children. You've also be granted child support but you're not sure what you can use it for. You don't want to get in trouble with the courts by using it for unauthorized expenditures. Here's a list that will help you understand what you can use child support for.

Living Expenses

If you have custody of your children, you're going to be spending much more than the child support you receive. Because of that, you can use child support to pay for your child's living expenses, which include food, housing and utility bills.

Medical Care

If the courts have not required your spouse to carry medical insurance for your children, you can use their child support to pay for their medical expenses. If your spouse is providing medical insurance, you can still use child support to pay for additional medical services that the insurance might not cover. For instance, not all medical insurance covers dental procedures such as orthodontic braces.

Educational Needs

Even if your children attend public schools, there are still going to be expenses associated with their education. They may require computers, tutoring or uniforms that will require additional expenditures. You may use your children's child support to provide for those needs. It's important to note that if your child decides to continue on to college, your spouse may be required to continue paying child support past their 18th birthday.


Courts recognize that children need to have entertainment in their lives. It's perfectly fine to use a portion of your children's support payments to provide for things like movies, amusement parks and other forms of entertainment.

If your children were used to a higher standard of living while you and your spouse were married, the courts may even increase their child support payments to allow them to continue enjoying the same standard of living.

Child Care

If you have young children, you may need childcare during your work hours. You can use child support to pay for those expenses. This is particularly important if you'll need childcare during the summer months when school-aged children will be out of school.

You should know that most courts will allow non-custodial parents the option of providing childcare for their own children. If you're going to require childcare, you should consult with an attorney to see if your spouse will have that option.

You want to make sure that you spend your child's support payments appropriately. The list provided above will help eliminate any confusion you might have about child support and the right way to spend it. 


About Me

Divorce – Do It Right

Hello. My name is Stephanie Laurel. I have recently been through a divorce, and although I don’t wish it on anyone, I do wish that everyone could come out of the proceedings feeling they have been taken care of. My husband and I had been married twenty-eight years. We have four children, two of which are still under eighteen years of age. We owned the home we lived in and had a vacation home in a different state. We are civilized people, we get along fairly well considering, but no matter how much we thought we could go through the divorce process without lawyers, it wasn't possible. We each hired a divorce attorney to represent us. Most of the negotiations went well, but when we hit a rough spot the attorneys took over. Thank goodness. I’m going to share more about the experience and hope it helps you.