Paying for the kids’ extracurricular activities

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in child support on Monday, September 30, 2019.

There is a certain sense of finality that comes with divorce, yet despite this feeling, you and all of the others involved in your proceedings will eventually regain the perspective that life does indeed go on. Not only does it continue for you and your now ex-spouse, but it also does for your kids. That means years and years of more soccer games, dance recitals, band camps and beauty pageants. As you know, all of these activities cost money, and this prompts many to come to us here at the Stange Law Firm PC with the same question: who pays for it?

It is a common (yet understandable) misconception that a child support obligation covers every expense related to your children’s lives. It does indeed cover their sustenance, medical care and other important needs, yet nor extracurricular activities. Like many parents, you may believe these activities to be important, but the difference between them and the aforementioned expenses is that football, ballet and piano lessons are not considered essential elements to a child’s upbringing (whereas having a roof over their head, food in their stomach and access to a doctor are).

Yet that does not mean that the costs for covering extracurricular activities cannot be made a legal obligation. While the website for the Kansas Judicial Branch lists activity costs as shared expenses, if you and your ex-spouse agree to include a plan that details their payment in your child support agreement, that becomes legally binding. If your ex-spouse has a subsequent change of heart and no longer wishes to pay for these activities, they would have to seek a child support modification to end their obligation to pay for them.

More information on the potential nuances of a child support obligation can be found throughout our site.

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