Legal Question in Family Law in Michigan

Are braces a "medical necessity"?

I share joint legal custody and am responsible for 50% the cost of "necessary" medical and dental care according to the Divorce Agreement. Without my knowlege or approval, my three children are getting braces at a cost of up to $12,000. While I may feel that one of the children really does need braces, I do not belive that it is necessary for the other two and would probably not have approved them if asked. Are braces considered a necessity? How might I demonstrate that they are not in this case?

Asked on 8/04/99, 6:07 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Henry J. Legere, Jr. Law Office of Henry J. Legere, Jr.
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Re: Are braces a

Yes, braces are considered a necessity by most courts. If the orthodontist believes it is necessary for the children's teeth to be straightened there are no Judges that I know who will not order such to occur. The court might find that you are being vindictive in this matter if you file a motion to block the braces and award attorney fees and costs to the otherside (especially true in Macomb and St Clair Counties). On the otherhand if you have an Orthodontist willing to testify that the children do not need braces or that there is no medical or pschological reason for the braces then you might have a chance of winning your motion and blocking the braces. Good Luck.

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8/06/99, 3:43 pm

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