The purpose of child support in a divorce or paternity case is to ensure that a child’s needs are met, and their standard of living maintained with both parents. Each parent has a responsibility to financially care for their child, but there comes a point where the obligation to pay child support ends. At the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg, our experienced Boca Raton family law attorneys are here to provide top tier legal counsel about this and any other questions that you may have about child support payments in your case. To learn more, call or contact our office to schedule a consultation.
Ending Child Support at 18
Under Florida law, child support typically ends when a child becomes a legal adult on their eighteenth birthday. However, if the child turns eighteen before they graduate from high school, child support continues until their graduation. The exception is if the child is on track to graduate from high school at age twenty or older, in which case the law reverts to ending child support on their eighteenth birthday.
Ending Child Support at 19
There is also a situation where child support continues until the child’s nineteenth birthday. This applies only if the child will turn nineteen years old before their graduation from high school. In this scenario, child support ends on the child’s nineteenth birthday.
Ending Child Support Early
Child support may also end earlier than a child’s eighteenth birthday if they enter into a situation where they are expected to be financially independent or shift financial responsibility to another party. For example, if a child marries before their eighteenth birthday, then the parents are no longer considered financially responsible for the child and support ends. It also ends if the child emancipates from their parents or joins the military.
Ending Child Support Late
Finally, child support may also end later than the child’s eighteenth or nineteenth birthday. The most common situation is when the parents agree to provide additional support beyond these milestones in the divorce settlement. This may be providing support until a later birthday or until the child graduates from college. Another situation where child support may continue later is when there is a child with special needs. Depending on the circumstances of the case, child support may continue for a period of years or for the remainder of the parents’ or child’s life. To learn more about these scenarios and which may apply to your case, talk to our office today.
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It is critically important that parents provide financially for their child, but at a certain point this obligation does end. If you are curious about when child support will end for your child or if you have any other questions about child support in your case, talk to the experienced and highly qualified family law attorneys in Boca Raton at the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg today to schedule a consultation of your case.