Handling kids’ extra-curricular activities post-divorce

On Behalf of | May 13, 2022 | Divorce |

It’s important for children to have social moments outside the classroom, and this is often established through extra-curricular activities. Parents in Florida who are divorcing may be concerned how the process might be affecting their children. A study led by UCLA shows those fears may actually be legitimate since the study found these children generally have lower high school graduation rates and are less apt to attend college. Participating in extra-curricular activities might be a wise solution since children have the opportunity to explore their interests, but who should be paying for these activities? Luckily, Florida family law has guidelines regarding this issue.

How child custody, support come into play

A family court judge is likely to use a formula focusing on the following factors when deciding on child support payments:

  • The gross monthly incomes of each parent
  • The number of overnights the children spend with each parent
  • Work-related childcare expenses
  • Health insurance premiums paid by either parent

The main goal of child support is to provide for the needs of the children. While extracurricular activities are often valuable to children, they are not always considered necessary. Typically, however, a child support order may include a provision stating the parents equally divide the expense of any mutually agreed-upon extracurricular activity expenses.

Even though Florida has a formula for calculating child support, it does not prohibit parents from negotiating an agreement. Parents may determine who pays for extracurricular activities on their own. If the payor pays more than his or her required child support, those extra funds could be earmarked for children’s pursuits outside the classroom.

Where to turn for assistance

Addressing payment for extracurricular activities early in divorce negotiations may help ensure children do not have to sit on the sidelines during activities in which their friends are participating. Parents who are unsure about these types of issues may do well to seek independent legal advice from an experienced family law attorney experienced. Having adequate help and support during any child support-related issues can significantly increase the odds of achieving the best possible outcome for the children.