Why am I paying child support past my kid’s 18th birthday?

On Behalf of | Dec 23, 2016 | Child Support

For many Oneida County parents who are obligated to pay child support, their requirement to provide financial support to their offspring ends when the children reach the age of majority. However, this is not the case for every payer of child support. Whether through agreement or by order of a family law court, a parent may be required to pay support beyond their child’s eighteenth birthday under several circumstances.

First, a parent may be obligated to continue supporting their child as that child attends college. Parents may agree to pay for their children’s tuition, living expenses, and travel costs while the child is a full-time student. This exception is somewhat common.

Second, a parent may be required to extend their financial support of a child into the child’s adulthood if the child suffers from impairments or illnesses that impose a burden on the custodial parent. For example, if a child requires medical treatment, occupational therapy and educational support to allow them to function in society, then a paying parent may be required to continue their support of the child so that the custodial parent is not responsible for all of the child’s ongoing expenses.

These are only a few of the reasons that a parent may find themselves paying child support into their kid’s adulthood. While attaining the age of majority, marriage, joining the military and other life events can terminate a parent’s financial obligation to their child, it is possible that a child’s special needs will warrant the support of their parents long after they become an adult. To learn more about the circumstances under which a child support order may be extended past the age of majority, readers may discuss their questions with their family law attorneys.