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Address all expenses during child support negotiations

During the course of a Maryland divorce, parents often spend a great deal of time discussing various child custody arrangements. Child support will also come into play, but many states have guidelines in place to determine which parent will pay a certain amount to the other. What many parents fail to consider is the many additional expenses that come with raising a child. Including those costs into the child support equation is important.

For example, many families include provisions for medical expenses in their child support plan. Often, parents will agree to divide the cost of medical needs that fall outside of existing insurance. That can make a world of difference if a child experiences a serious illness or injury, and incurs significant medical bills.

Another example is the costs associated with school and extracurricular activities. All parents know that there are expenses related to school trips, special events, participation in sports and even academic competitions. For a child who is very involved in his or her school, those expenses can really add up each year. Parents can agree on how to divide those costs, perhaps placing a cap on the level of expenses should be covered from the standing child support payments, and how to address overages.

When parents are able to work out these child support details during their divorce, it can be easier to transition into a co-parenting relationship as the marriage comes to an end. Having a plan in place to address additional expenses can also help Maryland kids continue to enjoy the activities and pursuits that they have come to love. As with so many aspects of divorce, maintaining consistency and stability is the best way to support kids as they move beyond an altered family structure.

Source: khou.com, "9 things you should do after a divorce to save your finances", Janet Berry-Johnson, Jan. 19, 2017

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