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What expenses does a Minnesota child support order cover?

It is an unfortunate reality that some quarreling spouses may attempt to reduce the amount of child support they pay in order to take emotional advantage of their ex-spouse, even at the expense of their children. Fortunately, Minnesota law has specific guidelines that must be followed when determining a child support formula.

In Minnesota, a child of a divorced couple has the right to financial support from both parents. The parent who has been given physical custody of the child obviously provides a certain amount of monetary support. But, it is the financial support of the non-custodial parent that can be crucial for the proper physical and emotional development of the child. According to Minnesota law, there are three parts to the child support equation: basic support, child care support and medical support.

The funds that go into the "basic support" part of the child support equation cover essential types of care, including education, food and clothes. Child care costs include the expense of sending a child to daycare for the entire day if they are too young to attend school full time, or for before school care and after school care if they attend school for a full day. Medical support care is used to pay for different kinds of healthcare, including doctor visits, hospitalization, prescription drugs, dental care and other types of health care coverage.

The state's child support website also includes a calculator to help both custodial and non-custodial parents determine the amount of money that they can be expected to contribute for child support. This calculator takes into account the parent's gross monthly income, how many children are in the home, the usual amount of childcare costs and several other important factors. Minnesota parents who are going through a divorce can find important information on child support on that website.

Source: Minnesota Judicial Branch. "Basics on Child Support" Accessed March 15, 2015

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