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Will you need to pay child support through college?

On Behalf of | Nov 2, 2020 | Family Law

You’re getting divorced with a 15-year-old child. They still live at home and you’re ordered to pay child support to help when you don’t have custody. You’re fine with it; you know that raising a child is expensive and you earn more than your ex.

What you start wondering about, though, is what happens when your child goes to college in three years. You remember your own college years. You were still very dependent on your parents for help, living at home over the summers and getting assistance with buying food, paying rent, etc. Are you still going to be obligated to pay child support when your own child is in college?

You likely will not. Child support generally ends at 18 years old. Your child becomes a legal adult and your obligation, legally speaking, ends. There are cases where children who are 18 and older are still in high school. If you’re in that situation, you may need to pay until they turn 20, but only if they’re still attending high school. If they graduate, as most teens do, then you don’t have to pay any longer.

That doesn’t mean you can’t help your child cover the costs, and your ex can as well. You may still want to provide assistance the way that your parents did for you. That’s fine, and you, your ex and your child can work together to figure things out. But it means that you have no legal requirement to do so.

The financial side of divorce can be complex, so you definitely want to know your rights, especially when it comes to issues of support. What you don’t know can hurt you, so find out more today.

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