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Does child support have to cover a child's college expenses?

The laws of New York require that parents subject to child support agreements and orders financially provide for their kids until they reach the age of 21. While marriage, enlistment in the military and other actions may emancipate children from the financial support of their parents, in many cases, children reach the age of 21 with the help of child support payments from their divorced parents. As most kids are out of high school when they reach this age, some may wonder if and how their parents will provide for them as they enter into college.

It is important that individuals understand that they can agree with their former partner to support their kids through their higher education pursuits. Two individuals who were once married with children but who choose to divorce can decide that they will work together to pay for the expenses their kids take on as they enter college. Terms regarding college costs can be worked into child support agreements with the help of family law attorneys.

For others, the answer may not be quite as clear. Courts may look at a variety of factors, such as the parents' abilities to pay for college and the student aid options the child has, when determining if a child's parents should be bound to pay.

Whether parents will be bound to pay for their kids' college costs will be dictated by their choices on the matter as well as the law. Getting answers to this and other tough child support questions should be done through consultation with knowledgeable lawyers.

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