Richard E. Fowlks, Attorney at Law

Uninsured medical expenses are usually included in support orders

When you think of child support, you might only think of the regularly occurring payments that go to your ex to pay for your child's needs. While these are a major chunk of what you will pay, there might be others too. For example, many child support orders require that both parents cover uninsured medical costs for the children.

Uninsured medical costs include co-pays and other expenses that come out-of-pocket for the medical care your children need. In order for you to have to help pay for these expenses, they have to be necessary and reasonable. This means your ex can't decide that your child needs a procedure that isn't really necessary and then demand that you pay for it.

Many child support orders cover the division of these expenses. Some use a percentage to let parents know who is responsible for what. Since these costs usually have to be paid at the time the service is rendered, the parent who brings the child to the appointment will have to pay for it. The other parent would then reimburse that parent. How and when this will happen should be included in the order.

Another possibility is that the custodial parent will be responsible for a specific dollar amount of uninsured medical costs per year. Anything over that amount would be the responsibility of the other parent.

It is important to know what terms are included in your financial support order so you can ensure you are complying. You don't need the trouble of having to go through another court battle based on failing to follow a court order.

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Richard E. Fowlks, Attorney at Law
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Portland, OR 97232

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