Check out our articles on Low-Income, High-Income and Private School Deviations to learn more about those specific deviations. Travel expenses, Life Insurance, and Extraordinary Expenses are other deviations you can encounter when calculating child support. It is important to remember that discretionary deviations are up to the Court to grant.
In cases where there are substantial travel expenses associated with the children’s visitation, it may be an option to have the travel expense deviation added. For example, the Father lives in Washington and the Mother in Georgia. Every time the children have parenting time with the Father, he is responsible for buying the round-trip plane tickets. Instead of it being an additional expense on top of his child support obligation to can be added as a deviation. This deviation is a dollar for dollar downward deviation meaning that it would decrease the amount of child support by the monthly travel cost. If it is decided the Father would spend $300 a month in visitation related travel expenses, then his child support obligation for each month will decrease by $300. A travel expense deviation could have a major impact on either your own child support obligation or the child support you receive. Unlike, other deviations due to the high expense of travel it can have a big impact on the final child support amount.
Life insurance is one of the least used deviations for child support. Either parent can add the deviation for the monthly amount they pay for the children’s life insurance. However, it is common that contained in the Settlement Agreement between the parties that the non-custodial parent obtains life insurance. The life insurance policy obtained has to cover the child support obligation in the event of his or her death. The monthly amount entered can be positive or negative. The positive amount will result in an upward modification and a negative amount will result in a downward modification. If the Mother owes the Father $500 in child support and pays $20 for life insurance, the amount entered will be -20.00 and will decrease the monthly child support to $480.
While Medical Insurance is a mandatory deviation for child support, in some instances when children or one of the parents are medically fragile it may result in increased medical expenses. Those extraordinary expenses are considered discretionary and can be added as a deviation. The deviation is dollar for dollar. The following is what the Georgia Civil Code says about Extraordinary Medical Expenses: “Such expenses may include, but are not limited to, extraordinary medical expenses of the child or a parent of the child; provided, however, that any such deviation:
(I) Shall not act to leave a child unsupported; and
(II) May be ordered for a specific period of time measured in months.
When extraordinary medical expenses are claimed, the court or the jury shall consider the resources available for meeting such needs, including sources available from agencies and other adults.” See O.C.G.A. 9-6-15 (J) (iii)
If you are ready to discuss your child support case with one of our experienced Family Law Attorneys, give us a call toll-free at 866-527-2630 to set up a consultation.