Extra-ordinary Expenses


#1

I have child support court on Monday for an increase on my ex-husband’s part due to the increase in his hourly wage and the increase in the healthcare that I pay. I do have a couple of questions.

I have extra expenses that have arised. The fact that he no longer keeps them in the summer at all, nor on school breaks and only 2 days every other weekend instead of 3, I understand that and have it noted to accommodate the additional overnights that the girls are now with me. However, our support order states that we are to pay child care for the time that the children are with us (so, when he used to take them for half the summer, he was responsible for half of the summer camp). However, he has not taken them NOR paid for his half of summer camp since 2011. I’m assuming that I am unable to recoup previous years’ costs but would like to outline this going forward. Is this considered “extraordinary” expenses?

My daughter is a cheerleader and this costs $300/year plus a $200 fee to the school, uniforms, etc. Is this considered an “extraordinary” expense?

Hot lunches that are purchased (and have been purchased since the girls started school there because there is no “cafeteria”. They either buy hot lunches through the school or pack their lunch). However, this started even before we separated/divorced and they’re supposed to continue in the lifestyle that they had prior to leaving. So is this also considered “extraordinary”?

My ex-husband also gets paid commissions. How might they take that into consideration going forward? (or will they?). They haven’t done so thus far. Only have considered the hourly wage.

Thanks in advance for your help. I’m trying to get everything together for court Monday so that hopefully the case will be heard and NOT continued.


#2

It sounds like you may be on a different worksheet based on the number of overnights changing pursuant to the child support guidelines. If their summer camps are work related, you can include them in the day care expenses. If not, you may be able to argue that they are extraordinary expenses. The court should enter an order retroactive to the date of filing of the motion to modify child support, so you may be able to recoup some of these expenses.

Extracurricular activities are not normally covered by the child support calculator and are not included in extraordinary expenses. Some judges will order these be split but others believe it is already included in the child support payment that you receive. If you can agree to split these in some fashion, it is better than having that issue go before a judge.

The child support guidelines use a calculation that takes the number of overnights into consideration. The reasoning behind this is that when you have the children overnight you are responsible for things such as meals for the children. If you are on a worksheet A, the majority of overnights are attributed to you and therefore so are a number of the lunches. If he has them 1/2 the time but refuses to pay for any lunches, then this should be brought to the judge’s consideration. These are all reasons you may want to file a motion to deviate from the child support guidelines.

Commissions can be handled a number of different ways, either through averaging historic commissions and including these as income or requiring that he pay you a percentage that is consistent with his child support obligation.