Who Should Pay for a Child’s Activity Expenses?

When a couple goes through a divorce, there are many issues that need to be resolved. If there are children, there are even more matters to be sorted out. In Arizona, both parents are expected to participate in their children’s lives, and both need to contribute to their care. Child support is usually paid by the non-custodial parent or an equal-custodial parent with greater income than the other. Many people wonder what expenses child support covers, and who should pay for a child’s activity expenses.

Determination of Child Support in Divorce

The appropriate amount of child support to be paid is determined using a formula. Child support is supposed to cover the basic living expenses of the child, such as food, clothing, and shelter. Generally, the costs of extracurricular activities are not included in this calculation. That can leave parents at odds as to how to pay for these additional expenses.

Types of Expenses That May Be Necessary

Although the main education expenses are usually determined as part of the divorce decree, some extra costs may not be accounted for. Some of these expenses include costs for school uniforms, expenses for extracurricular activities, sporting equipment, and dues for organizations, or clubs. Additionally, numerous expenses crop up from time to time. School photos, costs of school supplies, and registration fees for outside activities, can all add up.

Parents Need to Work Together

Parents need to communicate with each other, and work together, to pay for the expenses needed to provide for their children. Discuss the expense as soon as you find out about it. This allows time for both parents to plan the costs into their budgets. Parents may split all of the expenses in half, or they may choose to divide them in any other way that works best for them.

Use a Parenting Plan to Avoid Problems

It is always best to try to work out the details of the child’s expenses before they arise. A parenting plan is a document that is part of the divorce decree. It usually includes information regarding how visitation will take place, as well as how vacation time will be allotted. It can also include details about how extra fees will be paid. Keep in mind that the expenses for children’s activities will probably increase as the child gets older.

If you are working through the details of a divorce, call the experienced legal team at Udall Shumway PLC for the assistance you need.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding Child’s Activity Expenses, or any other family law issue, please feel free to contact Sheri D. Shepard at 480.461.5300, log on to udallshumway.com, or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.