How Does Child Support Work for Children with Special Needs?

children standing with rainboots on

When you and your spouse separate, it can be an incredibly challenging time. Not only do you have to get used to being on your own, but you’re also managing incredibly complex emotions. However, when you have children with special needs, this can create even more stress, as you may be worried about how you will financially support them. It’s important to understand that having children who require specialized or additional care will be factored in when determining child support payments. The following blog explores what you should know about these matters and why it is in your best interest to connect with a Nassau County child support lawyer to explore your legal options.

What Are Special Needs?

Generally, a child is considered special needs if they have physical, behavioral, or cognitive disabilities that require additional attention or specialized care. This care can be medical treatment, additional schooling, medical equipment, or therapy to help them succeed. Cerebral palsy, bipolar disorder, and autism are all examples of special needs.

What Should I Know About Child Support for Children With Special Needs?

As you can imagine, raising a child with special needs can be expensive due to the specialized care they require. As such, parents of children who need additional care may worry when they divorce their spouse, as they fear they may be unable to afford the necessary care and support for their child. However, like any divorce involving children, the courts will consider child support.

When the courts begin considering child support, they will consider a number of factors. However, if the child has special needs, they will factor in additional elements. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The cost of medical treatment
  • The cost of daycare or schooling
  • The cost of medical equipment
  • The cost of any modifications or renovations for accessibility to the home

It’s also important to understand that in New York, child support payments can be made to a child with special needs until they turn 26. Generally, so long as the disorder was diagnosed before the individual with special needs turns 22, the custodial parent can petition the court to receive extended payments.

Should I Contact a Lawyer?

If you are going through a divorce or separating from your partner with whom you share a special needs child, connecting with an experienced attorney is critical. Unfortunately, many parents are unaware of their legal rights and are overwhelmed by the divorce. As such, putting your case in the hands of a lawyer is critical to ensure your child receives the financial support necessary to help them succeed.

When you need legal help, Barrows Levy, PLLC is here to help. We understand how confusing this process can be, especially when you have a child to care for. As such, our team is committed to helping you achieve the best outcome possible for your unique circumstances. Connect with us today to learn how we can fight for you.

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