Understanding Ohio's Cash Medical Support Orders

Effective June 30, 2007, all courts and child support administrative agency orders (by CSEA) addressing the child support calculation must use the Child Support Computation Worksheet set forth in Ohio Revised Code Section 3119.022. While at first this computation worksheet appears to be confusing, the only difference between the new computation worksheet and the prior computation worksheet is the area where a provision is being made for an alternative child support order that concentrates on the fact pattern if neither parent has health insurance available for their minor children. Due to the increasing costs of health insurance and the actions of many employers either not offering health insurance or requiring employees to pay a portion of the premiums, together with massive job losses, many Ohio children are potentially not covered by health insurance benefits. While certain income levels may cause public assistance to be rendered so that a "medical card" can be provided through the Office of Job and Family Services to eligible family groups, the substantial majority of the participants in a divorce action in Ohio will either have their child or children being covered by health insurance through a parent's employer totally, partially (with the employee spouse having to pay a portion of the premiums) or there will be no medical health insurance at all.

Since Ohio child support calculations are generally based upon the gross incomes of the parties with few deductions being allowed, it is important that any party to a pending or prior Ohio divorce or child support action review the relative incomes of the parties and the costs associated with health insurance being provided by one or both of the parties to a certain degree. Computer software has been established to enter the amount of annual health care expenditures estimated by the United States Department of Agriculture and those figures together with determined health insurance costs must be made part of the child support computation worksheet so that parties to a child support case are able to predict the amount of child support to be paid from one parent to the other when health insurance is provided as compared to the amount of child support to be paid plus an additional sum of money to be paid so that the custodial parent can presumably purchase health insurance for dependent children when health insurance is otherwise not available.

If you have any questions surrounding the relatively new Cash Medical Child Support Orders in Ohio please call an experienced family relations or matrimonial lawyer at 330-392-5000 or contact us online.