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What should I know about medical child support in a divorce?

In a California divorce, those with children should be aware of various issues related to child support. Most will think about the monthly payment as a means to ensure that their child's best interests are met and their basic needs are provided. It is easy to forget that in addition to a home, clothes and other important items for the child's well-being, medical support will be needed. With any concern related to family law and support, legal help can be critical to an effective resolution.

There are key points about medical support that parents should understand. If there are disagreements, it is also imperative to understand these factors. When health coverage is provided, the law states that it must include vision and dental coverage. When the cost is assessed, it will be categorized as "reasonable" if adding children to the parent's policy costs no more than 5% of the providing parent's gross income.

When the child needs to receive medical care, that care must be accessible. Routine visits should be within 50 miles of the child's residence. The medical insurance payments will not be folded in with the child support payments - they are separate and are added to the support. If the child needs treatment that is not covered by insurance, the court divides the cost between the parents. When the child support order is first made or is in the process of modification, the parents should have proof for the court as to how much the medical coverage costs. This can be deducted from the income prior to the calculation of support.

Child support issues can be difficult and complicated, and support will include medical coverage for the child. Parents who are unsure of how medical coverage is handled and calculated should contact a qualified legal professional to deal with these concerns. This is true with any aspect of divorce. A law firm experienced in these issues may be able to help.

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John T. Chamberlin, Attorney at Law
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