What Expenses Are Covered by Child Support?

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If you are going through a divorce, you may be wondering about child support: how will it be determined? What expenses will be covered? Read on for more information regarding child support in New York.


In New York, a parent’s financial obligation to his or her child is decided by the Child Support Standards Act. The goal of the Act is to continue the quality of life for the child. The greater the number of children, the greater the percentage. The act rules as follows:

  • One child: 17%
  • Two children: 25%
  • Three children: 29%
  • Four children: 31%
  • Five or more children: No less than 35%

The court will also consider the following factors:

  • How old your children are
  • Whether your children have any special needs
  • The number of children in your household
  • Whether your children plan on attending college or pursuing a higher education
  • Whether you or your former spouse have consistent, hefty medical bills
  • Your child custody agreement

What Expenses Are Covered?

Child support is designed to cover the everyday needs of a child. Child support should be put toward the following:

  • Basic necessities: This applies to groceries, snacks, and meals. It also applies to clothing, though not all clothing will be covered. Some child support agreements include housing, which may apply to mortgage/rent payments, electricity, and more.
  • Medical care: The parent who has better health care benefits will generally put the child on their plan.
  • Educational fees: Education is expensive. A parent may be required to contribute tuition at a private school or the various fees and expenses associated with public school. Education also refers to school uniforms, lunches, textbooks, and so on.
  • Childcare: If one or both parents are unable to watch the child due to work, the child may require daycare, after-school care, babysitters, etc.
  • Transportation/travel: Transportation is a necessary day-to-day expense. Child support may go toward car payments, gas, bus tickets, and so on.
  • Entertainment: Child support should go toward entertainment for the child. Entertainment generally refers to things like games, computer access, etc. This also applies to outings, such as a trip to the movies or an amusement park.
  • Extracurricular activities: Many children participate in activities like sports or girl/boy scouts. These activities often come with fees, which should be included in your child support agreement.
  • College expenses: Often, parents are required to contribute to their child’s higher education, even if the child is past the age of emancipation.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding what expenses will be covered by child support, reach out to our firm today.


Peter V. Mandi, Esq. is an experienced divorce and family law attorney located in Bohemia, New York. Our firm understands the impact a divorce can have on your life. If you require strong and dedicated legal representation in Long Island, New York, please do not hesitate to contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates, Inc. today.

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