Law Office of Edward S. Matisoff

Westlake Village Family Law Firm
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Can you use child support to pay for piano lessons?

When you filed for divorce in a California court, you likely understood that your decision was going to affect more lives than just your own. As a parent, you may have been especially concerned about your children, which may have prompted your desire to compromise and co-operate as best you can with your ex to create an amicable co-parenting plan. As in many divorces, your particular circumstances might include a request for child support.

Both parents are obligated to financially support their children. Maybe you stayed home during the marriage, either sacrificing your career or working from home part-time so that you could be fully available to your children. While you may have no regrets about that, it can definitely place you at a disadvantage when you divorce and look to become financially independent. It is understandable if you might need child support to help your children thrive.

There is often a question about what types of expenses child support may cover. Most people logically assume that such provisions will be used for food, clothing, shelter, etc. However, many parents also use such monies to help offset medical expenses for a child, pay for college or even provide funds for entertainment.

Often, both the custodial and noncustodial parents work full-time after divorce. In such cases, child support is often used to help cover the cost of child care. A California family court does not monitor use of child support monies; however, if there is evidence that a parent is not providing for the needs of a child but is using the money in improper ways, such as to buy drugs or alcohol, take multiple personal vacations, etc., the co-parent may ask the court to intervene to help resolve the problem.