Parents in Nevada who are paying or receiving child support may have the common perception that payments only cover food and clothing costs. However, child support is also meant to fulfill the needs of a child from health care and medical expenses to tuition and educational fees. Generally, if the expense benefits the child, it can be covered by child support payments.
The custodial parent is assumed to have the child's best interests in mind, so the court does not require a list of expenditures or receipts to prove how the support payments are being spent. Payments can be used for putting gas in the car or paying rent and utilities, as these situations contribute to the well-being of the child. Child support may also be applied to recreational activities for the child, like tickets to movie theaters and theme parks.
Courts use child support guidelines to determine the amount and frequency of support payments. These guidelines are utilized in all 50 states, and calculations can differ based on type of custody, number of children and gross income. They provide the court with an overview of what each parent will be able to contribute to the child's care and needs.
Child support payments can be modified if a parent experiences any changes in their financial situation after the initial guidelines have been accepted and enforced by the court. Meeting with an attorney to discuss options to increase or decrease payments can give a general idea of what the amount will be if it is changed and whether an increase will establish a cap that the state sets for child support payments.
Source: Findlaw, "What Does Child Support Cover?", December 31, 2014