The Financial Impact of Divorce/Separation on Parents in the USA

Financial Impact of Divorce

For many people, the impact that a divorce can have on their long-term financial condition is one of the most emotionally taxing aspects of the process. When considering divorce, you need to figure out how your assets and liabilities will be split with your soon-to-be ex-spouse. If you want to keep from falling into complete financial disaster as a result of your divorce, you could be forced to make some significant lifestyle adjustments. As your wealth decreases, your credit score may see a temporary decline as well. 

If you are thinking of getting a divorce, evaluate and make plans to deal with the far-reaching financial repercussions as soon as possible. This will help you manage shared expenses between you and your ex-spouse. To have a clear knowledge of how a divorce will be settled in terms of the division of property, it is essential to conduct a thorough investigation. Lay out your assets, liabilities, income, and expenses. 

Find out more about the financial impact of divorce on parents in the USA.

Financial Factors to Consider During Divorce

Focusing on these financial issues will help set you on the path to effectively transitioning to your new life.

Splitting Debts

When the community property or the separate property of one spouse has been used to support the debts belonging to the other spouse, the court has the authority to order that spouse to seek reimbursement from the other spouse. This might happen when the debts were incurred during the marriage. Who is going to be accountable for paying off the debt after the divorce is final is another important question to ask yourself. 

Only the people whose names are listed on the debt can be pursued by credit card companies and other creditors for payment of the loan. If you and your spouse were both named on the debt, the credit card company or the provider of the home loan can ask you to pay up if your ex-spouse did not make the payments when they were due. Even if the divorce decree specifies which spouse is responsible for paying the debt, this rule remains in effect.

Divvying Up Financial Assets and Obligations

In states such as Texas, all property acquired or owned throughout the marriage is considered part of the community property. The judge will decide how the community property should be divided, and it will either be shared 50/50 or in some other manner that the judge deems equitable. This comprises the income received by each spouse from their employment or business, as well as income from their assets throughout the marriage, even if the assets are exclusively in the name of one spouse. 

The family residence is also included in this category. If you are unable to provide evidence that the funds in the separate bank accounts belong to you alone, the divorce will have an impact on your ability to maintain your current standard of living. Only the couple’s individual property will be protected from being split up between them. 

Tax Obligations 

As soon as the divorce is finalized, the couple will no longer be entitled to claim the tax status of married or filing jointly. This change will take effect in the year after the divorce is finalized. This is why financial planning is very important. You will be required to decide on whether you will file your taxes as a single individual or if you meet the requirements, as the head of household. Depending on the specifics of your position, each may provide favorable tax consequences. 

Retirement plans

The funds set aside for retirement are normally divided on an equal basis, although this is not always the case. It’s possible that the money you saved up before getting married counts as your personal property. When a couple is divorcing at age 50 or older, when retirement plan investments may represent a considerable percentage of their total wealth, it is especially crucial to reach a settlement that is fair and equitable for both parties.  

A qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) can be used to facilitate the transfer of a portion of the assets held in a workplace plan or IRA to the retirement account of a former spouse. To assist in avoiding a withholding tax equal to 20% of the transaction’s total value, the transfer can be conducted directly from one account to another. A one-time opportunity exists for the person who is receiving retirement assets in this manner to withdraw any amount of money from this account without being subject to the early withdrawal penalty of 10%.

Obligations Post-Divorce

Your divorce could leave you with significant new financial obligations, such as child support and alimony payments to the person you are divorcing. Alimony is financial support paid by one spouse to another after the dissolution of a marriage. This is to compensate for the loss of earning capacity caused by the other spouse’s departure. The goal is to assist your partner in regaining their financial footing following the divorce and in increasing their fortune. Regardless, alimony payments following a divorce are often only made for a set number of months at a time. 

Divorce has substantial repercussions for both the father and the mother in terms of child support obligations. Even when children spend less time with their parents after a divorce, parents frequently need to manage the expenditures of child support responsibilities in addition to the criteria for custody of their children. The duty to pay child support is discharged if a kid attains emancipation.


The process of getting a divorce is not only emotionally taxing but also difficult financially. It is best to employ the assistance of a financial advisor who can accurately appraise your assets and liabilities over time. This is to reach a conclusion that is just and equitable.

If you find yourself in a situation where a divorce is unavoidable, working with the proper financial advisor can help you obtain the knowledge, tools, and projections you need to protect your financial future.

Tips for Creating a Successful Custody Schedule with 2houses

Successful Custody Schedule

Creating a successful custody schedule can be a challenge but it doesn’t have to be when you have the right tools. 2houses is that tool that I recommend to every parent. It is a co-parenting app and digital program that both parents, and even the kids, have access to it. On it are places to store documents, journal, share photos and there is an in-depth and easy to use calendar to program in your custody schedule with ease. So let’s look at how to create that successful custody schedule with 2houses.

First: Create a Schedule

The very first thing you want to do is create a custody schedule by looking at all of the schedules that you have to work with. This includes your schedule, your co-parent’s schedule, school and daycare schedules, babysitter’s (if you use one regularly) schedules and the custody agreement, or court ordered, schedule. From there, build a schedule that works for both of you.

It should be noted that the custody agreement can be a range of different arrangements such as 50/50, every other weekend, odd days, 2-2-3 and so on. This will affect how you set your schedule with 2houses. In addition, while court ordered visitation schedules usually have firm rules, there are often room to shift schedules as you agree. If you want changes to your schedule, make sure that you discuss it as a co-parenting couple and not try to force it through as that could lead you both back in court.

Second: Program It In

You have your schedule, you know what activities the kids are doing, what the day to day looks like and when the kids are with each respective parent, now it’s time to schedule the calendar for 2houses. This can be a pain with many different apps but 2houses makes it really simple, you just have to remember these few tips.

  1. Set the type of custody schedule model you have, such as 50/50. 2houses lets you set the custody agreement on the calendar, which helps with programming it and means fewer steps when you do.
  2. Once you have that, choose a start date of when the custody schedule will start. You can also assign colours to each parent and even events that are mutual. One of the best parts of 2houses is that you can hit the button, “repeats until…” and you don’t have to put in each individual week.
  3. When you are at this stage, click on the day of the week and assign which parent will spend the night.
  4. Add additional appointments and events and mark who needs to attend or take the kids to them.
  5. Choose a place or time for exchanges of the kids. This is great so the kids know when they need to be ready and you can meet in neutral spaces if you need to.
  6. Save the schedule and it will appear, colour coordinated, on your calendar. You can edit the schedule as you need and you can add other appointments/events as they come up.

It really is simple to program it in and I find that is often half the battle when it comes to creating a successful custody schedule with your ex-partner.

Third: Be Honest and Send Notes and Document!

Now that you have it all programmed into the calendar, 2houses takes it to the next stage and allows you to send notes, journal or add documents to it. The folders to add documents really helps with organizing things and you won’t have to go back and forth to access things, which helps keep frustration levels low when co-parenting and navigating all the documents.

The other part, the journal, helps talk about how the custody schedule is working. You can give feedback, talk about what needs to be changed and offer suggestions. You can even send requests to have things changed on your scheduled visitation days.

Everything is in writing so you won’t forget during handoff and you also will be able to confirm a response.

When you are documenting, make sure that you are honest. Don’t keep doing something that isn’t working for you because that can lead to resentment, which can lead to tension in the co-parenting relationship. Instead, talk it out.

Fourth: Review, Review, Review

Which brings us to review, review, review. Custody schedules can be modified and they will change depending on the kids. Summers may look completely different than during the school year. Certain extracurricular activities can affect visitation schedules so you may need to shift. Job promotions might change availability for handoffs.

The main point is that life happens and sometimes you have to make changes to the custody schedule. That’s why you should review it every time there is a major event that can affect it but also check it frequently through the year to ensure that it is working for everyone. Thankfully, the 2houses app allows for everything to be reviewed easily…and you don’t even have to meet, you can just send messages.

Fifth: Use the App to Keep Communication Open

Finally, one of the best ways for a custody schedule to be successful is to communicate. Often, when we have misunderstandings or frustrations in the co-parenting relationship, it is because things have not been communicated properly. 2houses makes communication easy through the calendar and journal so make sure you use it whenever you need to make a change, need something to be remembered or when tensions are higher and it’s better for you both to step back and communicate over the app instead of in person.

Ass you can see, the 2houses app is set up to make life easier for co-parenting. And when it’s easier, you can focus on the important things in life…your kids, your work, and all the things that you need to get done in the day…while 2houses focuses on all the rest.

Impact of Divorce and Separation on Your Career as a Parent in the USA Do divorce and separation harm or help parent’s careers?

Impact of Divorce and Separation on Your Career

Some professions will prosper following a divorce, while others will suffer. If you are going through a divorce, you should be able to control the situation with your ex because whatever effects it has on your work will undoubtedly have an impact on your children/financing.

Also read:

How Divorce Harms Careers as a parent in the USA

Low Productivity

It is common knowledge that a couple’s mental health suffers after divorce. One’s mental health may suffer as a result of divorce procedures, which could reduce productivity at work. The need for breaks and fatigue might influence business owners, which can result in a shortage of funds for one’s lifestyle. 

Double Work

Two heads are better than one, as the adage goes. Financial expenses can always be shared by a couple who lives together. The custodial partner may try to take up an additional job or work twice as hard in order to meet their obligations when couples are divorced or separate because they are responsible for paying all of the expenditures associated with raising the children alone.

Legal Fees

Divorce is not something that should be taken lightly, as every American citizen is aware. To settle court costs and appointments, pay attorneys, and other expenses, ex-couples must withdraw from their savings or spend out of the income from their businesses or take a loan.  

Killing Your Chance for A Promotion

Divorces can make people more stressed out, and if your employer knows that you’re going through a difficult divorce, it could ruin your chances of getting a promotion because there’s a slim chance that the divorce’s emotional, mental, and physical repercussions won’t influence you. A raise in pay from a job advancement translates into extra luxuries for the kids.

Killing Your Chance to Move for Inter State Promotion

The United States has numerous relocation laws for divorced parents with children. Unless your former husband is helpful and understanding. If you have a promotion in another state after a divorce and your ex-spouse refuses to cooperate, the legislation in some states prohibits you from moving, which can have a significant impact on your career.

Excessive Child/Spousal support

Due to the fact that child support rates vary from state to state, the spouse who has the higher income may be required to contribute a greater amount toward both child support and spousal support payments, as well as the costs associated with going to court.  


When one partner decides to start the divorce or separation process during retirement, there are a few things that they need to take into consideration.

Concerns such as the grounds for retirements, the question of whether or not a pension will be offered, and the question of whether or not the offered pension will be dispersed adequately. When the payment for child support is due, who will be responsible for making the payment, and how will this work? These concerns need to be addressed, and it is possible that doing so will extend the period of time during which one is expected to be retired. This delayed retirement could result in a number of problems, including stress, exhaustion, resentment, and decreased productivity.

How Divorce Can Help Parent’s Career in The USA


After going through the process of getting a divorce, many people find that they are more inspired and productive than ever before. The former partner does not have to deal with the stress associated with a divorce, the proceedings associated with getting a divorce, or meetings with lawyers. They devote every spare moment they have to increasing their professional standing, which could eventually lead to promotions.

Child/spousal support and alimony

Some ex-spouses are made to pay child support, particularly if they have custody of the kids. Others receive monthly spousal support in addition to their income. The ex-mood spouse’s is likely to improve at work as a result, and increased productivity can help them advance their professions.

Legal Awards

Ex-spouses in some marriages may actually receive a sizable payout for the time they wasted with the other partner, particularly if there were difficulties with domestic abuse and infidelity. Additionally, spouses can claim that they have grown accustomed to a particular way of life, in which case the judges will provide them money to invest in their enterprises and individual careers.

How It Can be Managed

Effective Communication

To balance career progression, effective communication is required. Effective communication between the parents will prevent sentiments of hostility or resentment.

It’ll support career focus. If one spouse receives an out-of-state promotion that forces them to move, good communication will also aid in a pleasant transition.


Ex-spouses who engage in effective counseling can assist manage the problem.  


Both ex-spouses should set aside their differences and strike an agreement for the sake of their children and the management of their emotions to prevent a decrease in workplace productivity.

Legal Intervention

This is the most effective measure to make sure divorce/separation does not affect a person’s career. A lawyer should be involved that will make sure that all legal proceedings are just so that one spouse does not feel cheated in any way.


Going through a divorce in this day and age is very strenuous compared to how it was during the previous years. A divorce lawyer can be of great help to you on your divorce settlements and agreements. As a parent, your career has to be taken very importantly because this will be the base of your children’s financial and physical health.

It is important that you communicate with your lawyer effectively so that he can come up with steps to assist you while going through a  divorce or separation in order to protect your career and financial health.

Also see:

How to Manage Shared Expenses with Your Co-Parent in the UK

Manage Shared Expenses with Your Co-Parent in the UK

Money—they say that it can make or break a relationship. And everyone who has ever had to deal with difficult financial situations all know how true that can be. In the UK, a large number of divorced couples stated financial reasons as one of the main stressors that led to their divorce. And when you are parents, that financial stressors can follow you through to how you manage expenses as a co-parent.

Unfortunately, money, when you have kids, is not something that you can avoid discussing so why not learn how to manage shared expenses with your co-parent to make it as easy and stress free as possible. In this article, we will go over how UK co-parents can manage their shared expenses in easy and low conflict ways.

Tip Number One: Use a Mediation or Budgeting App

The first thing that is always recommended for managing any expenses is a budgeting app. I recommend that you go a step further and choose to use a mediation app with a built in expense tracker, such as 2houses. This will enable you to share what expense have been incurred and mark who has paid payments toward it. No actual cash goes through the app, that needs to be done outside the app, but payments can be marked on the expenses sheet to keep track of what the expenses were and what was paid into them.

A mediation app is really valuable because it helps reduce a lot of the tension around the conflict topic of expenses. You can look at what’s covered, what needs to be covered and you can simply add your part (either paying it directly to the expense or paying back your partner) to the expense and not have to discuss it in detail if it causes too many arguments.

Tip Number Two: Define Each Co-Parent’s Share

Once you have an app, sit down with your co-parent and look at the overall expenses. Kids come with a lot of expenses and its important to look at how those expenses are going to be shared. Most recommend that the expenses are shared in a 50/50 manner for every expense to help cut down on arguments if one parent’s expenses  end up being more at the end of the year.

When you are defining those expenses, be sure to be respectful of each other. You may have different ideas of what should be spent on certain things or what kids really need. A phone may not be something an 8 year old needs so if both parents don’t agree on it, the expense would fall solely on the parent who pushed for the phone.

Once you know what the expenses are, and how you are splitting up the share, you can really start to manage it by monitoring payments and expenses through a co-parenting app.

Tip Number Three: Define What is Over and Above Child Maintenance Payments

So, you have your list of expenses such as dance classes or soccer registration or even school field trips. But this isn’t enough. Many people are unsure what child support, also known as child maintenance payments in the UK cover. The answer is simple…the day to day.

What that means is that child maintenance payments, according to UK law, are used to cover the basic needs of the children. This includes food, shelter and clothing. How the payments are calculated rely on your individual financial situations and the level of income you had as a married couple.

It should be noted that basic needs does not cover all expenses. Extra curricular activities are not covered by child maintenance payments and will be over and above those payments. In addition, school uniforms and school trips are not basic needs and will be a shared expense that both parents will need to manage.

By defining what child maintenance payments cover, you and your ex-partner can better navigate managing those extra expenses that come up when raising kids.

Tip Number Four: Communicate and Break Down the Monthly Expenses

Management also relies on communication, which is why this tip is very important. For you and your co-parent to successfully manage expenses, you need to discuss them. This means looking at the monthly expenses and discussing them. If you have things coming up, you can set budgets on the max amount that can be spent. For example, if the kids need a new pair of school shoes, you can set the budget and, using a mediation app, send photos and price comparisons of the shoes that the kids want.

Communicating leads to having input on how your money is being spent and helps prevent any frivolous expenses that the kids really didn’t need.

Tip Number Five: Plan Ahead and Save for Emergencies

The final tip that I recommend when you are managing your shared expenses is to sit down and plan ahead. First, there are a lot of things that parents can plan for and that you know will be coming. For instance, if the kids play soccer in the summer, you know that every spring you will have extra expenses for soccer registration, uniforms, cleats, and so on. The same can be said for school trips, or camps the kids are going to throughout the year.

When you plan ahead, you can discuss with your co-parent what expenses are coming up, if the kids are looking at new extracurricular activities or when there will be expected expenses, such as a new pair of glasses, you can manage those expenses more easily by saving for them.

In addition, I recommend saving extra money if you are able to for those emergencies that can happen. Having those savings can help reduce a lot of anxiety and tension from the co-parenting relationship and from your financial worries.

Managing shared expenses doesn’t have to be difficult, especially if you are using the tools that are available for you, such as a budgeting app. You and your ex-partner can manage your expenses without a lot of conflict or tension and you’ll know that your kids’ needs are met all of the time.

Managing Childcare Costs after Divorce: Resources and Tips for Budgeting and Negotiating Expenses

Managing Childcare Costs after Divorce


Divorce can be an emotionally draining and difficult experience for parents and children. Our previous blog posts have shown that divorce has a profound emotional impact on children in many circumstances. Since infants learn about the world via their parents and surroundings, this foundation is strengthened as children grow older.

It is also a time when parents must carefully consider the financial implications of raising children independently. Managing childcare costs after a divorce can be challenging, but with the right resources and tips, developing a budget that works for both parents is possible.

Continue reading for some of the most helpful resources and tips for managing childcare costs after divorce. These include budgeting strategies, negotiating expenses with your former partner, and finding additional financial assistance.

How Are Child Care Expenses Divided after a Divorce?

Childcare expenses can quickly consume a large portion of a parent’s annual budget. In the United States, the rate of childcare ranges from $5,184 to $432 per month. Several variables influence how parents divide childcare expenditures when they divorce. Depending on the scenario, one or both parents may need to take on the primary or secondary caregiver role. Moreover, determining how childcare expenditures are distributed in a divorce may be complicated because childcare costs are sometimes unexpected and difficult to estimate. Childcare costs, in particular, may be influenced by the child’s age and the availability of daycare facilities.

It is imperative to note that childcare costs will differ depending on your child’s age and whether you have access to childcare facilities. The child’s age, the area where you live, and the type of childcare you and your child receive are essential factors to consider.

How to Divide Childcare Expenses When Separated

If you and your spouse are separating, it is a must to establish a financial agreement regarding how to split childcare expenses. You and your spouse both likely have differing childcare needs and economic needs. By establishing a financial agreement, you can ensure that your needs are met. Before you begin the separation process, discussing childcare and the future is worthwhile. The separation process can be emotionally challenging for parents and children, so discussing childcare is beneficial before the separation begins.

At the very least, it is critical to agree on who will take on the role of primary caregiver in the event of a separation. This can be helpful to have a financial agreement about how to split childcare costs. It can also help to have an agreement about who will take on responsibility for paying child support. This can be helpful if one parent cannot pay child support or is unwilling to do so.

How to budget around spousal and child support after getting divorced?

There are methods to budget around increased expenditures if one of the parents gets help from a previous spouse or another source. In many circumstances, one parent is responsible for paying spousal and child support, which may be difficult. Although budgeting for spousal and child support after divorce might be challenging, it is feasible. It is possible to manage childcare expenditures after divorce by following a few financial strategies, including controlling the expense of spousal and child support.

  • Contribute to child support. You may reduce the amount of child support you must pay by donating to it. If you are required to pay child support, contributing may assist in minimizing the overall amount you will have to spend.
  • Think about using flexible spending accounts. You may be able to manage child support bills, such as childcare costs, by setting up a flexible spending account. You may also assist with managing expenditures related to spousal assistance, such as housing and food.

Best way to spend money before and after divorce

Before you start budgeting for your family, you must have a strategy for managing your funds. Although adjusting to another budget may be difficult with the emotional turbulence of divorce, having a strategy for handling funds can be beneficial. Making a financial plan may help manage emotions and ease the transition to your current budget.

How to Create a Financial Plan

Make a budget. Many individuals start managing their money after creating a budget. A budget may aid in the simplification of financial planning and give a simple approach to monitoring and managing money. A budget may also help you make better financial decisions and find new ways to earn more.

Determine and address risk areas. Identifying and resolving areas of risk, such as high-cost loans or areas of trouble in your portfolio, may help simplify managing money. You can simplify your money management process and lower spending by identifying and resolving high-cost loans.

Best Way to Schedule Regular Bank Account Transfers

Scheduling monthly bank account transfers are one of the best strategies for handling childcare costs after a divorce. You may reduce the time you spend running funds by following a regular transfer plan. Creating a regular transfer timetable could ensure that all financial transactions are executed on time. A systematic transfer plan will help you keep track of childcare expenditures after divorce, including the price of daycare.

However, by putting in some extra effort, it is possible to develop a budget that works for both parents. A child care and development block grant (CCDBG) is a federal program that is legislation establishing the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). The CCDF is maintained by states, territories, and tribes and defines how federal funds will provide financial assistance to low-income families seeking child care. The National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies can also assist in managing childcare costs after divorce easier than ever before.

If you are beginning to manage your childcare costs after a divorce, it is wise to plan ahead. This means you can start creating a budget as soon as you can. You may be unable to work out a shared custody arrangement with your ex-spouse, but it’s vital to be honest with yourself when creating a budget.

Conclusion: Managing Childcare Costs after a Divorce

Just because a couple split up doesn’t mean they shouldn’t continue to share the responsibility of raising their child. However, parents must set aside the emotions of their divorce and focus on what is most beneficial for the children involved. This means putting aside past grievances and concentrating on resolving childcare costs.

The most important advice I can give you is don’t panic. Managing childcare costs after divorce is difficult but not impossible, and once you’ve found your feet, you’ll be much more confident about the future. We have many other online resources available that can assist with budgeting and negotiating childcare expenses. We would be happy to assist you in any way we can if you have any questions or concerns.

Understanding Child Support in a Divorce

Child support

The current divorce rate in the United States sits at 3.2 per 1,000 married individuals. This is down from several years ago, which means that the divorce rate is declining!

However, it still happens. If you are going through a divorce, it can be difficult. You may be struggling, and that’s okay.

But there’s no point in struggling alone, especially when there are plenty of people, communities, and programs out there to help you through it!

One thing you may need help with is child support. If so, this guide can help you understand a bit more about it and what you need to know. Keep reading to learn more!

What Is Child Support?

If you are going through a divorce, one of the most important things that you will need to understand if you have kids is child support.

In simple terms, child support is supplying payments to support a child during a divorce.

There are many different factors to understand when determining who is going to be providing child support. This typically depends on the income of the parents and how much time the child spends with either parent.

In a lot of cases, child support can actually be amicably worked out by the parents without going through the legal system or getting legal help. However, this is not always the case. If it’s not, the court will determine child support payments.

When the court gets involved, these payments are legally binding for both parties. They can either be paid from parent to parent, as part of a wage garnishment or through a state child support agency. This can be decided between parents with the help of the court.

What Does Child Support Cover?

If you are paying child support or about to start paying child support, you may be wondering what it covers. All child support goes towards covering any expenses related to the child. This could be for shelter, food, clothing, transportation, any medical bills they may have, health insurance, transportation needs, education needs, and anything else related to them.

The idea is to provide financial security for the child. The financial security only lasts until the child becomes an adult. Usually, this means that the payments will stop at age 18, but there are times that it can remain in place until the child is 21 or even a little bit older, depending on the needs of the child.

Missing Payments

So what happens if a parent misses a child support payment? If a parent fails to pay, this could result in going to jail, intercepting a tax refund, the government seizing property, or something similar. However, of course, there are exceptions to the rule.

If you need to pay child support but there is a major life change, there’s always the possibility to petition the court. You may be able to modify the child support payment if you face a job loss or are going through a serious illness at the time.

Who Gets the Child Support Payment?

If you are going through a divorce, the financial stress that you are feeling is enough on its own. But add in child support, and it can become even more stressful very quickly.

One of the most popular questions is who gets the child support payment during the divorce.

This typically goes toward the custodial parent. The custodial parent is the one who cares for the child on most days or for the most amount of time.

The non-custodial parent will be the one making the payments to the custodial parent. These payments depend on the income of the parents, the expenses of the child, and the time spent with the child.

How Child Support Is Calculated

Calculating child support is not a random process. The federal government requires that each state has their own process to calculate child support. The amount of child support is based on the parent’s income and expenses.

Although there are some other factors, this is the majority of what is taken into account by the courts.

However, the court will also look at the child’s needs and how likely the non-custodial parent is to be able to make payments. By looking at these factors, the state may determine that using the normal formula shouldn’t be done in this case. This is done on a case-by-case basis.More Details

The Income Shares Model is the most popularly used model for child support payments across 40 states. To determine the amount of child support, the states do the following:

  • The income of the parents is added together
  • Based on this number, a basic child support obligation number is determined
  • Based on this number, other considerations are taken into account such as medical care or work-related and child-care expenses
  • The child care support obligation is then split between parents based on a prorated rate determined by their income

Understanding Child Support

Going through a divorce is never easy, but having to go through the divorce and figure out your legal obligations as a parent for child support is even more difficult.

Getting used to having two houses can be extremely difficult for you and your former spouse. Luckily, 2houses is a program designed to help make the transition easier so you can focus on your own health and well-being during this difficult time.

With 2houses, you can keep track of finances, calendars, and everything else having to do with co-parenting all in one place.

If you feel that you’d benefit from this, you can start your free trial today to try it out before committing!

How to Facilitate Shared Expenses Management for Divorced Parents

How to Facilitate Shared Expenses Management for Divorced Parents

Children are money-sucking machines. The cost for a middle-income family to raise a child is roughly $233,610. That’s almost $13,000 a year for 18 years in shared expenses.

After a divorce, your costs may change, but you should still expect to pay thousands for your child. You must work with your co-parent on shared expenses so your child has the best life possible. 

When should you talk with your ex about shared expenses options? How does child support affect shared expenses? What should you do about one-time and emergency expenses? 

Answer these questions and you can cover all of your bills without a problem. Here is your quick guide.

Talk to Your Ex About Shared Expenses

You should discuss sharing expenses with your ex early in the separation process. If you can, sit down with them and figure out a split that works for both of you.

Most judges require divorce agreements to have written plans for splitting expenses. You can reach whatever agreement works for you and your ex. If both of you earn roughly the same amount of money, you can split the expenses 50-50. 

If one of you earns more money than the other, the person who earns more can pay for more expenses. But the other parent should contribute. 

You don’t have to split all expenses. While you have custody of your child, you should pay for food and gifts, not your ex. 

Understand What Child and Spousal Support Covers

If one of you needs support to cover your child’s expenses, the other parent can offer child support. Each state has its own laws for child support. Talk to a lawyer before you figure out how to use child support to pay for the bills. 

In general, child support goes toward essential living expenses. You can use the money to pay for clothing, food, and housing. Child support may not cover health insurance or optional expenses like private school tuition. 

Child support lasts until a child turns 18. If they go to a college or university, they can continue to receive money for their education. This includes certificate and graduate programs.

Spousal support or alimony is separate from child support. It covers one person’s expenses, including housing and food. Once they become independent, they no longer receive spousal support.

You cannot use spousal support to pay for your child’s expenses. There may be some overlap, as paying for your child’s housing often means paying for your housing. But money intended for you must go toward you primarily. 

If you find a new partner, you should not expect them to pay for your child. They can do it if they want to, but they are under no obligation to chip in. Grandparents and other relatives can also chip in, but only if they have the money and desire to do so.

Develop a Schedule

You should first develop a custody schedule so you know when you have physical custody of your child. You should then figure out a payment schedule when you and your co-parent need to cover the bills. You may need to pay for groceries every week and rent every month. 

You should also figure out when you need to pay one-time payments. Your child may need new school supplies in September, or you may need to get them gifts for their birthday.

Once you have your expenses charted out, you and your co-parent should figure out how you will pool your money. You can create a joint bank account and put money into it before you make a major payment.

If you keep your accounts separate, you can record when you make your payments on an app or a chart. Figure out how to manage shared expenses with an app for divorced parents

Keep in Touch With Your Ex

You can follow your plan for managing expenses until your child becomes independent. However, you should remain in touch with your ex to see if your plan is going well.

You can communicate with your ex however you want. You can use an app, social media, or phone conversations.

If you need to talk with them about a major expense, you should have a face-to-face conversation so you can talk in full detail. You can make changes to your shared expenses plan if both of you agree on it. 

Keep your conversations focused on expenses and don’t hash out a topic that doesn’t relate to your child directly. If you want, you can bring someone with you or communicate with your co-parent through an intermediary.

Prepare for Sudden Expenses

You should expect emergencies that you have to pay for. Your child may develop a medical condition that requires treatment, or they may need special education services. 

Develop a plan with your co-parent to cover these unexpected expenses. Most parents split emergency expenses evenly, though you may need to pay more if your child is with you.

You also need to think about what would happen if you or your ex lose your job. The co-parent that still has their job may need to take over the other parent’s expenses while they find work. They may also need to pay temporary support to the unemployed spouse so they can keep their home. 

Start Sharing Your Parenting Expenses

You can figure out shared expenses with your co-parent. Talk to your ex as soon as possible and write a formal plan for how you will split expenses. Keep in mind that child support goes toward expenses specifically for your child. 

Develop a schedule so you know when the money is coming in. Stay in touch with your ex so you can deal with emergencies as soon as they happen. Try to split one-time expenses evenly, but step up if your ex needs support. 

Take advantage of tools for shared expenses. 2houses offers premium co-parenting apps. Get started today.

Effective Money-Saving Tips while Co-Parenting

Money-Saving Tips while coparenting

Parental cohabitation is becoming more common. It’s a great way to reduce child support, save on childcare costs, and maintain a good relationship with your partner.

Raising a child takes a lot of money. When you have two parents contributing, that adds up to thousands of dollars spent each month on diapers, baby food, clothes, and toys. And there’s no guarantee that both parents will take the same approach when it comes to how they raise their kids.

In this article, we will share some money-saving tips and tricks you can use to make the most out of co-parenting. Hopefully, it will help you save some of that cash and have some fun too! When you have two parents who aren’t on the same page, things can get messy. That’s why it’s important to find ways to save money while co-parenting.

Why is it important to have a creative budget when co-parenting?

The most important reason to create a budget is that money management in the long term will result in better financial security for you and your children. You will be able to have a large financial reserve they can use later on.

If you are already in debt, creating a budget is an easy way out of that situation and allows your family to pay for the essential items without blowing all their money on bills.

It will give you a good procedure to follow and focus on your debts, allowing you to know how much money is coming in and where it’s going out.

The growth rate in co-parenting has caused a big burden on many families. The increase of sole custody cases shared parenting plans that are not working out. The lack of good quality daycare options in most communities greatly increases costs for parents who want to raise their children. With all this being said, you can easily see how important your financial resources can become when raising your kids.

15 Effective Money-Saving Tips while Co-Parenting

Here are some money-saving tips to help you maintain a good relationship with your partner while you co-parent.

1. Establish a budget plan with your partner.

Without a proper plan, you are flailing around in the dark when it comes to finances. A budget plan allows both of you to be on the same page about money so that financial and relationship issues won’t arise later on down the road. Working together has benefits for everyone involved. Both of you will be able to work out financial issues in a way that works for everyone.

2. Consider sharing the cost of childcare to save money.

Childcare costs can be a major expense when you have a child. It can be the biggest expense of your entire family budget. If you both work, childcare costs can eat up a large chunk of your monthly budget. It’s important to keep this in mind when you’re thinking about how to save money while co-parenting.

If you both work, you can cut the cost of childcare by finding a way to share its cost and have access to quality childcare. You can also save on childcare costs by sharing the cost of hiring a nanny.

3. Take turns when buying groceries.

It’s great to have a partner who shares the responsibility of buying groceries. But when you’re splitting the groceries, it’s easy to end up with two different food budgets. That can lead to arguments and feelings of resentment.

One way to avoid this is to take turns. The first person to buy groceries should do so for a week. Then, the other person should do the same in the next week.

This works great if you have a budget for groceries and you’re both on the same page about how much you can spend.

4. Cook at home with your partner rather than eating out for every meal.

Many parents take their children out to eat every night for dinner. This can be expensive, especially if you don’t cook for yourself. But cooking at home for every meal can save you a lot of money and time. Not only will you save money, but you can also make sure that you and your child have a healthier diet.

5. Don’t make impulse purchases. Stick to a budget.

It’s easy to spend money when you’re shopping with your child. You might want to buy some new clothes or toys, but make sure that you have a budget in place and check store weekly ads for discounts before you go shopping. If you don’t, you might end up spending a lot of money on things you don’t need.

You don’t want to spend money on something that you don’t need. But, if you do buy something, make sure you don’t spend more than you planned to, especially if you have a joint budget with your partner. It’s harder to track what you have spent if you’re not on the same page.

So, avoid impulse buying. Make a budget and stick to it.

6. Avoid babysitters.

Instead of paying for a sitter, try to arrange your schedules so that you can take turns or together watch the kids. That way, you can make sure that they are getting the attention they need. You can make sure that your child is safe when you’re out of the house besides saving money.

7. Consider selling your old baby gear.

It’s easy to get into the habit of buying baby gear, but you can save money by selling the old ones. You can sell it on eBay, Facebook, or at the local consignment stores.

8. Become a member of your local food co-op.

When you have a baby, you’re probably going to need to buy a lot of baby food. Buying baby food can be expensive. You can save money by becoming a member of your local food co-op and buying a variety of foods that are usually cheaper than the same foods from the grocery store. You’ll also be able to get the food delivered right to your home.

9. Buy food in bulk.

One of the biggest expenses for couples who co-parent is food. This is especially true for couples who travel a lot and try to cut back on costs.

One way to save money on food is to buy it in bulk. If you have a large family, you can buy a large box of cereal, a large jar of peanut butter, and a large bag of carrots. That’s a lot of food for one family, but it will last you for a long time. You can even freeze the food and eat it later.

10. Seek advice from other co-parents.

You don’t have to be alone in the struggle to have a successful family. You can learn a lot from other co-parents.

One way to do this is to find other parents in your area who have children the same age as your child and have the same goals.

You can ask them about how they parent and what they do to make sure their child gets the best start in life.

11. Cut back on your hobbies.

If your child is going to be a movie enthusiast, it might make sense for you to pay for half of their weekly movie tickets. However, if you don’t enjoy watching movies, there’s no point wasting money by purchasing a ticket.

In addition, if one of your hobbies is hiking or reading books on tape, you may find that these activities are not as fun and rewarding. When necessary, you need to compromise to meet other needs like work and child care.

12. Have a garage sale.

One of the best ways to save money is to have a garage sale. You can sell your old baby gear, old clothes, and any other items you don’t need. You can also sell baby items like cribs, strollers, and other paraphernalia. If you don’t have any buyers, you can advertise via Facebook Marketplace or hand-deliver flyers to your local laundromat, daycare centers, and apartment complex hallways.

13. Buy second-hand clothes and toys.

When you have a baby, it’s important to have a lot of baby clothes and toys. Buying new baby clothes and toys can be expensive. You can save money by buying second-hand baby clothes and toys.

If you don’t have the time to go to a second-hand store, you can shop online. You can find tons of websites that sell second-hand clothes and toys. You can also find sites that sell second-hand baby gear.

14. Set up a personal emergency fund.

As a parent, it’s important to have an emergency fund. This will help ease the financial burden if something were to happen, such as losing your job or having car problems.

Depending on your lifestyle, a personal emergency account needs at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses. If your finances are already in poor shape such as debt and wasted money, you might want to start saving immediately. Try saving 5% of every dollar you make until you have a hefty sum saved up before putting too much into accounts with fees, like credit cards that may cause unnecessary expenses if necessary emergencies arise.

15. Have regular financial check-ins with your ex.

Make sure to have regular financial check-ins with your ex. This involves asking your ex to get a current assessment of his or her financial situation. Here, you can discuss the following:

1) Do they have enough saved up money?

As you know well, college tuition is expensive. Your child’s education is a very important investment for their future, and parents should be prudent about the financial resources spent on their children’s education. You both want them to have a great life and be able to get the best education possible.

Therefore, it’s important to set up regular financial check-ins with your ex, so they know not just what they’re spending now but also how much is needed for your child’s education such as college tuition costs.

2) Do they still owe any debts?

If your ex owed some debt before getting back together or if you had to pay some debts during your relationship, the two of you must determine whether any disability was involved. Don’t let emotions get in the way when talking about money with your ex. Do keep in mind there are many

5 Easy Ways for Solo Parents to Save Money after Divorce

Save money after divorce

Being a single parent is stressful even when you don’t have to worry about money and budgeting at all times. In order for your child to thrive, you need to make sure they have all their essential needs covered, which all costs money. From new sneakers to school supplies, every month is its own challenge. Therefore, to get the most out of the little you have, you need to be smart about your spending. Here are some tips for single parents that will help them save money in the long run!

Create a budget for the month

A budget may seem like a waste of time if you’re already struggling to make ends meet. Regardless of your income, though, setting up a budget is critical. When it comes to creating a budget, all you really need is a plan for spending. This way, having a budget allows you to take control of your money rather than just react to events as they occur. Create a budget for the following month after tracking your previous expenses. Include all of your fixed costs, such as rent or mortgage payments, utility bills, and insurance premiums, and set spending restrictions for those areas. You may be left with some leeway. In an ideal world, you’ll be able to save some money immediately, even if it’s only a modest amount.

Be thrifty

Since no one can receive everything for free, staying on top of coupons and top deals is the most one can hope for. If your child hasn’t been brainwashed by big brand marketing yet, look for bargains at your local car boot and charity stores. For deals, you should also visit Facebook’s marketplace and other online second-hand sites. Another way to save money by being thrifty is by using a car share service. You don’t have to spend money on your own gas and you may also meet some new people along the way! Who knows, maybe they’re also single parents who can give you some great advice!

Automate fixed expenses

Single parenthood can be a challenge, particularly when costs keep piling up. Having the essential utilities automatically paid is one method to help you budget. No matter if you have a lot of debt or it’s all paid off, you’re sure to benefit from automated payments. Because you’ll never see the excess money that should go to utilities in your account, you’ll never be able to spend it. This is also a great way to avoid late penalties and not spend time worrying about them. When you’re a single parent, it might be hard to keep up with everything, so even little things can be a great way to alleviate the stress.

Bulk buy for groceries

Saving money as a single parent can be done if you do a huge monthly grocery haul. Bulk buying your food can be a great way to get more for less. Whenever feasible, go with the value store since it’s much cheaper and basically the same thing. Store-brand items can cost you half the price of a brand name. Who wouldn’t be excited about that?! If you’ve been living week to week, bulk purchasing might be a challenge at first, but it becomes simpler as you save more money.

Parenting is a hard ordeal in its own right, but when you have to be thrifty at all times, it can be even tougher. The key thing is to think about your monthly expenses and plan accordingly, taking into account the essential utilities you need to pay. Also, make sure to get free things and bulk buy groceries every chance you get. Buy second-hand as often as you can. If your kid is young, they may not even notice the difference!

How is Child Support Calculated?

Child support

It is the responsibility of both parents to financially support their children. When one parent has physical custody after a divorce, the other parent makes a child support payment to fulfill his or her role as non-custodial parent.

Furthermore, marriage has no bearing on the need to support a child. Any parent, whether married or not, is accountable for his or her child’s financial well-being.

That being said, it would be better and more financially sound for separated couples to settle child custody issues and financial support agreements through a child custody attorney than bring the case to court.

The Impact of Custody Decision on Child Support

The courts rarely intervene in how parents decide to raise or support their children, unless there is neglect or abuse involved.

When a couple gets divorced, one parent is usually granted custody while the other is expected to provide financial support. In the event of a custody dispute or should the custodial parent seek financial assistance, the court may step in and issue orders on what the both parties must do to maintain the well-being of their children.

In most cases, mothers get custody of the children and fathers are usually the ones who pay child support and alimony to fulfill their responsibility as non-custodial parents. However, when they are granted joint custody, the court determines the amount of child support each parent must pay based on the law.

Factors Affecting the Amount of Child Support

Federal law requires each state in the United States to develop criteria for determining and calculating child support. Though the guidelines can vary greatly from state to state, they often rely on the same considerations used for deciding spousal support and child custody, such as:

  • The parents’ individual incomes
  • The amount of time the child spends with each parent
  • The number of children and their ages

The court will also take into account variables like the family’s standard of living before the divorce, the special needs of the child, the resources of the custodial parent, and the non-custodial parent’s ability to pay.

In situations where a child has extraordinary needs, the court may deviate from the standard child support guidelines and decide for the best interest of the child.

How to Calculate Child Support

How much you pay as the non-custodial parent (or how much you receive as the custodial parent) is determined by the formula that your state uses to determine the amount of child support payments.

Again, child support laws differ by state. Each state government employs one of three fundamental models/methods to calculate child support, which are as follows:

1. The Income Shares Model

Most states use the Income Shares Model. In this method, the court considers the combined parental income and the number of minor children to determine what share of their parents’ income the kids would have received if they lived together. This model is founded on the idea that both parents’ incomes were spent to benefit all the members of the household prior to the divorce.

For example; the court determines that the children require $2,000/month and the parents earn a combined annual income of $200,000. If the father earns $120,000/year and the mother makes $40,000/year, the court may order the father to pay $1,200/month and the mother to pay $800/month for child support.

2. The Percentage of Income Model

In states that use the Income Percentage Model, the court calculates child support payments based on a set percentage of the non-custodial parent’s gross or net income and the number of children he/she supports.

The percentage of income can be either flat or varying. In the flat percentage model, fluctuations in the income of the non-custodial parent does not change the percentage of income paid towards child support. The varying percentage model is the opposite. The percentage of income changes as the non-custodial parent’s income changes.

Alaska, Mississippi, Nevada, and Wisconsin use the Flat Percentage Model, while North Dakota and Texas employ the Varying Percentage Model.

3. The Melson Formula

States that use the Melson formula calculate child support payment based on a specific set of parameters known as the “Melson Factors.” Some of the considerations included in this model are the income of both parents, the needs of the child, the standard of living adjustment for the child or SOLA.

The Melson Formula is a variant of the Income Shares Model. Their biggest difference is that the Melson Formula allows for additional child support payment as the income of one of both parents increases.

Delaware, Hawaii, and Montana use the Melson Formula to calculate child support.

How Long Must Parents Pay Child Support

A parent is required to pay child support until the child reaches 18 years of age. However, if the child lives at home and is financially reliant on his or her parents, child support payments may have to continue even after they turn 18.

Parents with 18-year-olds still enrolled in school, for example, may have to support their children until the age of 23. Moreover, a parent with a severely disabled child can be ordered by the court to pay child support for the rest of his or her life.

What Can Happen If A Parent Fails to Pay Child Support

Failure to pay child support can result in serious consequences. Asset seizure and wage garnishment may be imposed on a non-paying parent. And because child support is a court order, a parent who fails to pay it may be held in contempt of court, face jail time, and/or lose his or her driver’s license.

Even a parent who’s unable to work is not excused from paying child support. Missed payments will be accumulated as arrears even if a parent is in jail or the hospital, and these arrears must be paid back when he or she can work again.

Parents who fall behind on child support payments can petition a judge to reduce future child support payments, but this will have no effect on past due child support. Child support is owed until it is paid in full and is not dischargeable even through bankruptcy.

About the Author:

Andrea Williams is the Community Manager at The Law Offices of Alcock & Associates P.C., a premier law group in Arizona that provides legal services to clients involved in Personal Injury, DUI, Immigration and Criminal cases. She enjoys cooking, reading books and playing minigolf with her friends and family in her spare time.