When children in California dream of Olympic gold medals, their parents may find themselves dreaming of ways to come up with the money to make those dreams come true. Paying for athletic training expenses can be an even bigger challenge when parents are divorced.
Many U.S. athletes who medaled at the recent Rio Summer Games have parents who are divorced. This is great evidence that children of divorced parents can still obtain their athletic dreams. The money for some athletic expenses, especially those in the beginning, can be written into the child support agreement that is part of the divorce settlement. Many states allow money for athletic endeavors to be set aside as part as “entertainment” costs. As the child becomes more advanced in their chosen sport, expenses may grow to not only include coaches, personal trainers, massages and training, but also uniforms and travel.
Some child support guidelines may have provisions for additional money for “gifted” children. If pursuing competitive athletics is determined to be in the best interests of the child, the judge may be likely to invoke this clause. In doing this, the judge will consider the parents’ incomes, any prior agreements and how talented the child is. If one parent is more involved in the child’s athletic activities, that parent may be asked to contribute more.
Divorcing parents of budding Olympians may want to negotiate these expenses in their child support agreements. A family law attorney may be able to help them draw up the agreement. If parents divorce before the child begins to show athletic talent, they may need assistance from a lawyer in modifying the child support agreement.