Many people wrongly believe that parents should only use child support money to pay for a child's bare essentials like food, clothes and medical care. However, child support also covers other expenses, such as schooling, extra-curricular activities, entertainment and other expenses.
Here is a complete list of everything that parents can lawfully purchase or pay for with their child support money:
Basic necessities: These items include healthy food, snacks, beverages, appropriate clothing, utility bills and shelter-related costs like mortgage or rent payments.
Medical care: Every child needs access to quality medical care. Depending on the parents' arrangements regarding who shall provide health insurance and pay for medical care, the spouse who receives child support may be able to use the child support money to meet these expenses.
Educational costs: Regardless of whether a child attends private or public school, some education expenses arise. Parents can use their child support money to pay for these costs.
Childcare expenses: Most modern parents, particularly single parents, rely on childcare services so they can work during the day. Child support payments might pay for these costs relating to nannies, babysitters and daily or evening childcare services.
Transportation and travel expenses: Most parents spend a lot of time and money driving their children from place to place. Child support may cover some of these expenses related to maintaining and owning a car, gas expenses, vehicle insurance, vehicle registration or the cost of public transportation. Sometimes, the children may need to travel by air or bus to visit the other parent. Parents can use their support money to pay for these travel expenses.
Entertainment costs: Spending money on entertainment is a viable use of child support money. This could involve money spent on video games, board games, television cable, computers, internet, movies, amusement parks, vacations and camping trips.
Extracurricular activities: Many children take music lessons, art lessons or participate in sports. Child support may cover the costs associated with these activities.
If you're a single parent and you have any questions relating to the viable use of your child support money, you may want to learn more about New Jersey child support rules and regulations to ensure that you're appropriately using your child support funds.