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If you are a divorced Kentucky parent, your former spouse likely pays you child support every month as required by the court. But have you ever wondered what things you can use that money for?

Bear in mind that the theory behind child support is that children of divorced parents should be able to maintain the standard of living they enjoyed during their parents’ marriage. Consequently, as FindLaw explains, you can spend the child support money your former spouse sends you for anything that benefits and supports your children.

Essential needs

It goes without saying that you must provide for your children’s food, clothing, shelter and other basic needs before you spend your child support money on anything else. Nevertheless, it may never have occurred to you that since your children live with you, you can pay for their portion of your living expenses out of your child support. For instance, use it to pay for the following:

  • Your children’s portion of your monthly rent or mortgage payment
  • Their portion of your renter’s or homeowner’s insurance policy
  • Their portion of your monthly utility payments
  • Their portion of your home maintenance and upkeep expenses

You can likewise use your child support money to pay your children’s portion of your following transportation expenses:

  • Your monthly car payment
  • Your auto insurance premium payments
  • Your gas, oil, tires and other ongoing vehicle maintenance expenses
  • Your necessary car repairs

Nonessential needs

Once you have provided for your children’s basic needs, you can spend the remainder of your child support money on other nonessential things they require. For instance, you can use it to cover whatever school and extracurricular activity expenses their academic careers require.

You should also heed the old saw about “all work and no play makes Jack and Jill dull kids.” You can use your child support money to pay for occasional movies, restaurant forays, camps, vacations, etc. In other words, virtually anything that benefits your children represents a legitimate way in which to spend your child support money.

This is general educational information and not intended to provide legal advice.