Child support is meant to help with the living expenses of the child. This includes things like food, diapers, clothing, personal care items, school supplies, and, generally, basic extracurricular activities. Child support is also meant to help with the extra cost a parent has to pay to provide living space for a child. For example, having to pay for a 2 bedroom apartment instead of a 1 bedroom, once you have a child.

Neither the court nor the Maintenance Enforcement Program will keep track of what the parent receiving child support spends it on. Child support is meant to contribute to basic necessities, such as housing, food, and clothing. The table amount assumes that the parent who is caring for the child is already contributing to the financial support of the child. The table amount being paid is the paying parent’s contribution to meet the child’s basic needs, just as if they were living with the child and helping with the child’s expenses.

Family Law - Question #1

What is child support meant to cover and how do I know my child support is being spent properly?