Is Daycare Included in Child Support in New York?

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child coloring in daycare

No matter how amicable you and your spouse may be, divorces are always complicated, even the simplest ones. This is doubly true when children are involved. As difficult as it may be, it’s important for you and your spouse to cooperate if you truly want the best for your child. That being the case, what happens when the custodial parent needs daycare, as so many parents do? Who is responsible for paying for daycare, the custodial parent or the non-custodial parent through child support? This blog will explore all this and demonstrate to you how a Suffolk County child support lawyer can help you through your divorce.

Is Daycare a Part of New York Child Support?

New York State has a required basic child support amount for non-custodial parents, based. It is calculated and ordered as a percentage of both parents’ adjusted gross income. However, non-custodial parents may be obligated to pay funds above and beyond that for childcare. Courts are cognizant that the custodial parent may face day-to-day difficulties arranging childcare in the face of work or school obligations.

Typically, childcare expenses are considered “mandatory add-ons,” meaning that New York courts legally must order child support payment to cover certain costs. These are: if the custodial parent needs childcare to be able to go to work, look for employment, and/or to enroll and attend post-secondary or vocational school that can assist in finding a job.

How Much of the Daycare Cost Does the Non-Custodial Parent Have to Pay?

Several states in the U.S. mandate that each parent pay half the costs of childcare (which can include daycare). New York, however, calculates the percentage each parent must contribute based on how much each parent earns relative to each other.

What Are Permissible Forms of Daycare?

Many different kinds of daycare qualify as child care for the purpose of child support. A licensed daycare facility, a preschool, even babysitters and nannies all qualify, though if the cost of a family member babysitter is being included in child support, the custodial parent must prove the babysitter is being paid. Nannies qualify as well, particularly in high-income situations.

Does the Non-custodial Parent Have a Choice in Daycare Provider?

The non-custodial parent may be able to influence the choice of daycare, but only if they have joint custody of the child. In joint custody, parents need to agree on major decisions, and childcare may be seen as a major decision.

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