When married parents get divorced, often they will either agree that one parent provide child support to the other, or the court will order child support to be paid. Children of divorce should not have to suffer financially because their parents are splitting up, and child support is intended to at least partially replace the noncustodial parent’s income in the household.

New York State law provides guidelines for how much a parent should pay in child support, based on how many children are involved and the parents’ combined incomes. But these are guidelines only, not ironclad rules. Family court judges are authorized to order more than the standard amount of child support, if it will not be enough to pay for necessities like the kids’ education, medical expenses and day care.

Day care is vital when the custodial parent works or is in school, and the children are still young. Parents must share these costs. As far as medical expenses, parents share the cost of the children’s health insurance and any uncovered health care costs. How much each parent pays depends on the amount of their respective incomes.

Later on, when the kids graduate high school, who pays for college may be an important question. Children in New York have the right to receive child support until they turn 21. In some cases, children have been able to legally require their parents to pay their college expenses.

Almost every parent in Buffalo wants the best for their children, given what the parent can afford to provide. A knowledgeable family law attorney can help ensure that the child support is fair and reasonable.