When establishing a child support order you may see an order to pay for your child’s health insurance, even if you are a noncustodial parent.
If you have not had a child support order before, this may seem confusing and you may wonder if this is standard procedure.
Health insurance is a standard part of a child support order
According to the Michigan Courts, the payment of medical and health care is a standard part of a child support order in Michigan. Additionally, the child support order will usually require that either one or both parents maintain health care coverage for their children. The health insurance must be available at a reasonable cost, as an employment benefit. Parents who are self-employed and have health insurance must also obtain coverage for their dependant(s), as long as it is available at a reasonable cost.
Determining reasonable costs of healthcare
When determining what a “reasonable cost” of health care coverage is, it must not exceed five percent of your gross income. Additionally, if your net income is below 133% of the federal poverty level, things are a little different. The court will not expect you to contribute towards health care coverage for your child unless you can obtain it through an employer for no cost. Furthermore, if the total costs of your support order exceed 50% of your net income, health care costs would not be reasonable. The court order should specifically state what a reasonable percentage amount or dollar amount is in relation to your income. If for some reason, however, the court decides to enforce a different amount, the court must note it on the order with the reasoning.