There are limits in Illinois and around the country on what can be paid for with child support payments. Child support is intended as a means of aiding the receiving parent by providing financial assistance for the costs associated with raising children. However, each state’s laws dictate exactly what types of expenses are covered by child support.
When parents who have to adjust to being married to being single begin to budget for their new lifestyle, they should always keep in mind what is not included in child support payments. The costs of the things that they consider necessary for their children to have a rewarding life will have to be paid for some other way, usually out of the parents’ own pocket.
Child support is typically not applied to nanny or babysitter services, daycare and after school care for very young children. Expenses for extracurricular activities that are common with school-age children also may not qualify. This means that parents will have to find other methods of payment for academic tutoring, certain sports, enrichment camps, traveling or club sports team, yearbooks, school photos, private lessons for singing, sports or dance and recital fees and costumes. This also applies to college tuition, the purchase of a vehicle, the insurance for the vehicle and weddings.
When parents are assessing the amount of child support they receive, they should know what is not covered. They should contact an attorney who practices family law and may be able to advise them of the specific laws of their state regarding the proper application of child support payments. The attorney may work to negotiate divorce settlement terms that would require both parents to contribute money to the things they believe would benefit their children but that are not covered by a child support order.