how to account for support payments

Child Support Accountability

Goldberg Jones Child Support Leave a Comment

Anyone who writes a monthly check to cover a recurring payment  expects  to know where their money is going and if it is being used as intended. But what about child support payments?

Child Support Payments

Child support is a tool to ensure the child(ren) are entitled to a similar financial security and lifestyle as they had previous to a divorce. These numbers are drawn up by splitting the income in half as if in one household, from there the support is calculated equitably.

Maintaining “a similar lifestyle” after divorce can be difficult.

  • When a household is divided by the dissolution of a marriage, the separate households must continue to provide for the child(ren).
  • While the collective income of both households is a key factor in calculating support, the expenses of both homes are not taken into account.
  • The result is two households trying to function on the same income as the single household that existed during the marriage.

Showing Accountability

It is important to mention that the money paid for child support can be spent as the custodial parent sees fit. This means, in most cases, the custodial parent is not required to provide an accounting of how they spend the support money from the noncustodial parent.
Only rarely, on specific occasions, will the child support recipient be required to provide detailed reports on how support payments were allocated to cover specific expenses. These exceptions are made (very seldom) for: child care expenses, un-reimbursed medical costs, extracurricular activities, and for children with special needs.

Keeping Track

It is imperative that all support payments are documented and made through the appropriate channels. Too often men try to be accommodating and make arrangements that are not outlined in the support order. Without proper documentation and acknowledgement by the court, these “side deals” can quickly turn out to be a sticky situation where dad is required to pay back support due to there being no record of the payments he had been making on time.
If you find yourself in this type of dilemma or are in the midst of a separation or custody case it important to understand all your rights as they pertain to your unique situation.  Knowing your rights will help ensure you are paying, or receiving, the appropriate amount—and your child(ren)’s well-being is paramount.

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