Sharing child rearing expenses can be challenging. Divorce almost always means that parents will have to tighten their belts as they begin to maintain separate households. When structuring a divorce settlement agreement, it is important to consider the personal finances involved in co-parenting so that you are not on the losing end of financial arrangements with your ex. Mapping out a comprehensive plan to fund the care and support of your children through the age of 18 and beyond is key to avoid issues later.
Your divorce decree will set forth the conditions of your divorce, establishing child support payments, parenting time and responsibility, property division and more. When reaching important decisions about sharing expenses of raising children, it is important not only to deal with the here and now, but also the future when you are a parent.
Consider for example, participation in childhood sports. If you have more than one child, or even one child participating in multiple sports, registration, equipment, traveling and the like add up quickly. Details such as how expenses will be shared, whether its for sports, a class trip, camp, prom or college tuition, must be addressed in your divorce decree to avoid on parent from having to foot the bill as a child grows up.
And of course, it is important to not only agree to share expenses, but to figure out how you will track expenses and be reimbursed. With the technology available today, there are a number of apps that can be employed to keep track of expenses related to child rearing, allowing parents to compare notes and contribute their fair share in real time. It is important to work out the details of how you and your spouse will handle expenses – planned or unplanned – as you work through your divorce agreement. Having an eye toward the future will save you time and the expense of going back to court for a modification when unforeseen, yet typical, child rearing expenses arise.
If you are a parent considering divorce, contact the family law offices of Schlesinger & Strauss LLC for more information regarding Illinois child support, parenting time, parenting responsibility and more. Attorney Michael S. Strauss is one of the authors of the new Illinois Child Support Law. Call Schlesinger & Strauss, LLC at 847-680-4970 to discuss your situation or click here to contact us.