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Do Parents Paying Child Support Have to Pay for Braces and Other Noncovered Medical Expenses?

In Pennsylvania, parents who pay child support share the responsibility of paying medical expenses for their children that insurance doesn’t cover. According to the specific provisions in a divorce decree or child support order, they may be responsible for paying for unreimbursed or uninsured dental, vision and medical costs. However, if neither document addresses these expenses, parents will typically be required to cover their portion of the costs associated with these treatments, provided they are deemed “reasonable and necessary.” So, you may wonder whether parents paying child support must pay for braces and other noncovered medical expenses. And the answer is: it depends.

Family courts in Pennsylvania will assess the need for orthodontia on a case-by-case basis , but if your child wants braces solely to improve their physical appearance, these procedures may not qualify for child support payments. If a dentist indicates that a child’s braces are required to maintain his or her health in addition to improved aesthetics, braces will be considered reasonable and necessary according to Pennsylvania child support statutory provisions. As a result, supporting parents will typically be required to help cover these expenses.

Other noncovered medical expenses that noncustodial parents will be required to cover through child support include copays, prescriptions, deductibles, and other medical costs incurred through medically necessary procedures or treatments. Some child support orders will detail the percentage of unreimbursed and uninsured medical expenses that each parent will be required to pay.

For additional information about what medical expenses child support must cover, consult with an experienced Bucks County child support attorney at The Law Offices of Jennifer Courtney & Associates, P.C. in Yardley. We provide reliable legal advice and counsel to help you determine what you will need to pay. Call 215.493.3360 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today.

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