Tuesday, October 23, 2012

New Law regarding Health Expenses, Daycare, and Extra-Curricular Expenses

Up to this point, our firm has been very successful with our requests from McLean County courts for a division of child-related expenses, such as medical costs, daycare, and extra-curricular activities. While there has not been any explicit statute regarding these expenses in the past, there has been case law, from the Illinois Appellate Court, that we have used to assist the judges who want to divide these expenses. But now, the State Legislature has passed Public Act 097-0941. This law amends the Child Support section of the Divorce Statute (Section 505), and specifically states that a court can, in its own discretion, divide these expenses between the parties. While we have found that it was almost a given in every Bloomington divorce (or separation) that medical expenses are divided, a number of judges have, at times, expressed reluctance to split extra-curricular expenses, perhaps worried about over-stepping the proper reach of a court. After January 13th (the date this new law goes into effect), the amended statute gives a court discretion to allocate these expenses between the parties.  Allowing the courts this discretion will likely enhance the odds that a court will actually use such discretion to equitably allocate these expenses. If you have any questions about this new law, and how it could affect your situation or case, please contact our office at (309) 622-5084.  


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Jon D. McLaughlin
(309) 319-6206 


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