And another money question....
He pays me child support. I am unsure what that is supposed to cover. (besides food, housing, medical, daycare)
Am I responsible for paying for everything they need such as all clothing, school lunches, textbooks, etc? The provisional order specifically states how much medical I am supposed to cover, but does not mention anything else.
When the kids need shoes, if he buys them do I reimburse him. Do I have to buy everthing, how does all this work?
Ergh. It all comes down to money, doesn't it?
My ex and I equally split the cost of school lunch, all school and activity fees, any extracurricular activites and any expenses like cell phone bills, health insurance premiums, health club dues, and medical and dental copays. I also reimburse him for half the health insurance premiums for the kids, since he carries them on his plan at work. I carry my son on my car insurance, so every six months I call Nationwide and they give me two figures: what it would cost to carry me only, and what the difference is when we add my son. My ex pays half that.
If I get my daughter a haircut, I pay. If I buy her clothes, I pay. If I buy her a bike, it stays at my house the majority of the time. If I take her to a waterpark or a movie, or if she goes with a friend on "my time", I pay. If it's for school or Girl Scouts or 4-H, we share the expense, regardless of who has her that day.
She's taking a Red Cross CPR/First Aid babysitting course on my evening. We share the cost.
I buy her the majority of her clothes and personal items simply because it's akward for a 13 yr old girl to have her dad take her to be fitted for bras. Her dad pinches pennies when it comes to anyone but himself, so I also buy her things like hairbrushes and hair ties, because he buys the cheap crap you can't even use without pulling your hair out.
I'm sure he fudges the numbers, because he will use any opportunity to "screw" me. If he gets off on having me pay an extra $50 for health insurance when he makes 3 times as much money as me, fine. It's not worth the hassle requiring receipts, but if it got out of hand I would demand it.
It's my understanding that child support is meant to make sure that the kids' standard of living isn't significantly different whether their parents are married or not. The custodial parent uses the funds to take care of all the kids' expenses - rent/mortgage (unless that's dealt with someplace else), utility bills, day care, groceries, clothing, etc. - while the kids are under your roof. If a noncustodial parent wants to buy their kids something, that's above and beyond - you don't have to reimburse him a dime. Check your state's website - my state has a really good website for child support - explaining everything - because in my state, if a parent's name is on the birth certificate, that parent can be held responsible for providing child support if the child doesn't live with that parent (if a child has to be removed from their parents, it's a different ball game).
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