Medical support is a form of child support often provided through an employer’s health insurance plan. Child support agencies will send a National Medical Support Notice (NMSN) to the employer to order coverage for an employee’s children. The specific language is contained within the Uniform Child Support Order. It will designate if one or both parents will maintain medical insurance on the children. It will also set a limit on the parent’s income to be used to obtain medical insurance. If the insurance cost exceeds the limit, the parent can petition not to have the insurance. If both parents carry medical insurance on the children, then one parent’s insurance will be primary, and the other’s will be secondary. The order will determine how much each parent will pay toward any uninsured expenses not covered by the insurance.
One of the more nuanced issues involving child support is reimbursement for medical expenses. When one parent is ordered to pay child support, the monthly amount they pay includes a contribution to the ordinary costs of the child or children. The Michigan Child Support Formula (MCSF) states that “ordinary medical expenses include the support recipient’s co-payments and deductibles, and uninsured medical-related costs for all children in this case.” (2017 MCSF 3.04(A)(3)). However, issues arise when the parties’ child incurs substantial healthcare expenses above what is considered “ordinary.”
Each one of these areas is considered separately from the others. However, some areas can affect other sites. For instance, the number of overnights exercised by a parent for parenting time will impact the amount of child support. However, which parent has legal custody will not change the outcome of child support, including medical support.
If you have minor children and are considering divorce, contact us to learn more about how a divorce will impact your children and what you can do to minimize that impact. And visit our YouTube channel for more information on co-parenting, communication, and more.