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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

707 N. York Street, Suite 201, Elmhurst, IL 60126

DuPage County | 630-852-9700

Mokena | 815-727-6144   Oak Park | 708-848-3159

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What Costs Can Be Added to Basic Child Support Obligations in Illinois?

Posted on in Child Support

Oak Brook child support attorney

Everyone knows that raising children can be expensive; the costs of food, clothing, toys, and a variety of other expenses can add up quickly. In fact, it is now estimated that the average cost of raising and supporting a child to age 18 is around $233,610, according to a 2017 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) study. While this may not seem like a lot when it is stretched out over 18 years, it can be difficult for one parent to pay for all of the costs of raising a child. This is why child support is typically ordered in cases in which parents are divorced or separated, ensuring that both parents are responsible for financially providing for a child’s needs.

Extra Costs of Raising a Child

In Illinois, a basic child support obligation is typically determined during a divorce case, and this is meant to account for all of the child’s basic needs, such as food, clothing, and housing. However, any parent knows that there are many more expenses involved in raising a child. That is why Illinois law also has provisions to account for other child-related expenses, such as:

  • Schooling: A court can order one or both parents to provide for a child’s school tuition. If the child was already in private school or has been in private school for a majority of their educational career, they will likely be allowed to continue their private school education, and the costs of tuition will be divided between the parents.

  • Child-Care Expenses: Paying for day care for children while parents are working can become expensive. Illinois courts can order one or both parents to contribute to “reasonable child care expenses” for the child, which can be payable to one of the parents or directly to the child care institution. The costs for child care will most likely be prorated in accordance with each spouse’s percentage of the combined household income.

  • Extracurricular Activities: As with schooling expenses, Illinois courts may require parents to divide the costs of the other activities children participate in. The court can order these expenses to be covered as long as the activities are intended to enhance the educational, athletic, social, or cultural development of the child.

  • Health Care: A portion of the basic child support obligation is intended to cover some of the out-of-pocket costs associated with health care. The court can also order either parent to initiate or continue health care coverage for the child through their own health insurance plans, and the costs of health insurance premiums will typically be divided between the parents. Based on the needs of the child, the court can also order each parent to contribute toward other health care costs. 

Contact a DuPage County Child Support Lawyer

Raising a child is no easy feat; it can put a strain on both your finances and your emotions, but it is one of the most rewarding things in the world. If you are wondering how your child’s expenses will be taken care of after your divorce, you should contact a Hinsdale, IL family law attorney right away. At Wakenight & Associates, P.C., we have more than 95 years of combined family law experience, and we can help you settle any child-related issues you may have. We offer free consultations, so call our office today at 630-528-0734 to schedule an appointment.

 Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000050HPt%2E+V&ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=6100000&SeqEnd=8350000

https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/090415/cost-raising-child-america.asp

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