Figuring out child support in a divorce can be one of the most important and also sensitive aspects of the family law process. No parent wants their children to suffer because of divorce, and that includes them feeling the brunt of limited finances once a marriage is over.
Child support laws in Maryland exist to try to protect the best interests of children following your divorce. Generally, as a society we agree: kids shouldn’t suffer because their parents split up. Child support guidelines suggest there is more to protecting children’s well-being than simply ensuring they have a roof over their heads and food in their bellies.
As most parents understand, a child’s development is complex. Healthy development is important, and there are ways to foster the healthy development of children besides sending them to school, feeding, housing and loving them. Studies show that involving kids in the community and extracurricular activities in particular is valuable to their health.
According to FindLaw, most states’ child custody laws recognize the importance of activities for kids outside of school. The following are just some of the many reasons why getting children involved in sports and/or other activities is beneficial:
- Sports get kids moving and foster a healthier body, mind and lifestyle.
- Team sports teach kids to work together and collaborate.
- Different kinds of activities such as sports and music can teach kids to focus.
- Activities can teach the value of setting and achieving goals. This provides a sense of power for children.
- Staying busy and finding a passion can keep kids from falling into patterns that may lead to drug and alcohol use and other risky behaviors.
Based on the above points, you can see why requesting child support to help cover extracurricular activities is not only reasonable, but it may be foolish not to. Even though your marriage is over, hopefully you have an ex who agrees that raising the happiest, healthiest kids possible is a forever commitment. Talk to your divorce lawyer about how to arrange your family’s child support payments in order to best foster the well-rounded development of your child.