Medical expenses after divorce


#1

My ex and I are divorced, with 3 children. I live in Wake county, she lives in Lincoln county. We have joint legal custody and she has primary physical custody.
Spousal support recently ended and as I expected, my ex is now starting the process to attempt to increase the amount I pay in child support.
Our separation agreement makes no mention regarding medical expenses, only that I pay 100% of the medical insurance for all the children.

My ex informed me that my daughter needs braces (which she does) and since I make more than she does, I should pay 100% of the cost of the braces. I requested, as I will be spending over $6,000 on braces (if I pay for everything), to claim my daughter as a dependent for the 2 years I will be paying, so that I can count the expenses on my taxes. My ex flatly refused, as it would “affect her tax return”.

Now my ex is stating that “CSE says you have to pay for their medical expenses anyway”. Nothing is written in the custody agreement or the separation agreement about this, or about claiming dependents on taxes. So my question is, with nothing being written in either the separation agreement or the custody agreement, am I “required” to pay these expenses? I, of course, want my daughter to have braces, but I am asking only about what I am “legally required” to so, since my ex is starting to toss around that term quite often.

Thanks.


#2

If medical expenses are not covered in a court order or separation agreement, then there is no real requirement that you pay 100% of the cost of the braces. If you were unable to come to an agreement about medical expenses, she could take you to court for child support and have the court address the issue of these expenses. Courts are not inclined to address the cost of braces as they are usually considered cosmetic and not a necessary medical expense. You should discuss this with your ex and come to an agreement that you are both comfortable with.


#3

Sort of a followup question to the last post, my employer has just received notice that my ex has filed for the state to calculate my child support, and are questioning my salary, etc. That is to be expected, but I haven’t received anything in the mail myself. Should I expect to receive a questionaire or survey of some sort? My employer doesn’t have all the information (for example, they don’t offer health insurance, so I insure my kids elsewhere, but my employer can’t comment on the amount, since it doesn’t go through them). Will I get a chance to state my version of expenses, overnights, extraordinary expenses, etc, or the chance to review my ex’s statements (which I am already very skeptical will be accurate) or does the state just take her word on it and make it’s calculations based on that?
Should I be doing anything proactively to contact them (child enforcement services), or just wait meekly to hear from them and possibly let them use faulty info, which I suspect would be much harder to reverse than if I had a say-so initally.
Thanks.


#4

If she wants to modify child support, the child support enforcement agency will have to file a motion to modify or a claim for child support (if there isn’t an action pending). You should be noticed to appear at a hearing where you will be able to present evidence. They may be trying to reach a consent order rather than having a hearing, and you can contact them to discuss the calculations and see if you can reach an agreement.


#5

In our divorce degree my ex and I are to share the medical expenses not covered by insurance 50/50. recently I got remarried and my new husband can add the kids on to his insurance at work which would cover most of what their dad’s doesn’t cover plus has eye and orthodontic coverage which his doesn’t. Problem is he refuses to sign a disclosure saying he has the primary insurance so my husband can’t add them on until he does. If he refuses to sign can I make him responsible for all of the bills for being an @** & is divorce affects children?


#6

It sounds like he has been compliant with the court order, and as long as he pays 50% of all uninsured medical expenses, he will continue to be compliance with the order regardless of whether you try to make him responsible for all of the uninsured medical expenses.

If you want your children to put on your new husband’s medical insurance, you should file motion to modify child support, and present your evidence to the court why putting the children on that policy is in their best interests. Hopefully the filing of the motion will prompt your ex to comply with your requests and make the modification hearing unnecessary.