Suri Cruise

Flynet, Pacific Coast News

How much does it cost to be Suri Cruise? What might Tom Cruise's child support payments look like?
—Emmy TZK, via the inbox

Well, hold on to your lower jaws, kids, because I'm about to whip out numbers so huge that you just might end up gawping for weeks in disbelief.

It's not cheap to be Suri Cruise. How not-cheap? We're talking six figures a month not-cheap, and here's why:

For this answer I consulted with Steve Mindel, an attorney who specialized in divorces and all the money that goes with it.

Now, keep in mind that child-raising is already costly no matter who you are. According to one calculation, a single parent living in the northeastern U.S., which is where Katie Holmes plans to live with her 6-year-old daughter, can expect to spend $430,000—or much more—to care for a child until he or she is grown.

But that figure is nothing compared with the costs associated with raising a tiny fashion plate accustomed to private planes and room service.

"At the end of the day," Mindel predicts, "it would not be shocking to learn that if you add it all up—cash, nannies, education, travel expenses, security—Suri might be getting $80,000 to $100,000 a month in support."

Pick your jaw up off the floor and I'll break that down for you.

When it comes to divorces, most states have a computer-generated system for calculating how much a kid gets in annual support. That formula, however, is designed mostly for, you know, normal people. Not guys who get $75 mil a year for bouncing off of buildings and smiling for the cameras.

So that formula tends to cap out at $20,000 to $30,000 a month. For more privileged kids, special add-ons must be formulated after that-expenses unique to children of the rich and richer.

Round-the-clock child care? Maybe $7,000 to $8,000 a month. Home schooling or tuition? Maybe $15,000 a month. Travel? Tack on another $20,000 or so.

Now you can begin to see how it all adds up.

And I haven't even gotten to Suri's famous wardrobe.

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