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Understanding child support requirements in Ohio

Child support can be ordered for a variety of reasons in Ohio. Whether or not the parents have been married, support for the child can be sought once the parentage has been proven legally. The Child Support Enforcement Agency can help set up or enforce a child support order. This can also be done through the courts.

It is usually the responsibility of the parent who does not have custody of the child to pay child support. If custody is shared, the amount may be reduced, depending on how much time the child spends with each parent. There is a formula for calculating what the support payments should be that is based on wages, taxes paid, cost of health insurance and other factors. Support is generally required to continue until the child has graduated or turned 18 years old.

Paying for medical care is part of the child support order. A cash medical support order outlines the expectations of who will pay for medical costs that are beyond what is expected. Medical insurance must be carried for the child, and the parent with whom the child lives will generally have to pay any normal costs for medical care. Normal costs are the first $100 per child per year for which a parent must pay themselves, according to state law. Costs that are beyond what is expected, or 'extraordinary" costs, are often ordered to be paid proportionally to each parent's income.

A person going through a divorce or a custody case could end up paying or receiving child support. A divorce lawyer can help explain the laws and requirements around health care in child support orders.

Source: Ohio State Bar Association , "Child Support", September 21, 2014

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