Child support is money paid from one parent to another to help him or her cover the expenses that come with being a child’s primary caregiver. These expenses include groceries, housing, the child’s medical care, and any other needs the child might have, like school supplies and extracurricular activities. When a couple with one or more children divorces, an order for child support is generally part of the couple’s divorce settlement.
But when does the need for this support end? Childhood does not last forever, but in many cases, a young man or woman is not self-sufficient when he or she turns 18.
If you are a parent who is currently paying child support, you might be wondering when this obligation will be terminated. The answer is, there is no set expiration date for a child support order. When your son or daughter no longer needs your financial support depends on a variety of factors, such as his or her education, his or her ability to earn an adequate income, and the choices that he or she makes. When you feel your child no longer needs your financial support, you must petition to the court to have your child support order terminated or modified.
You can have your child support order include an ending date, such as a specific birthday or point in your child’s life, such as graduating from high school or college. If you have this requirement in your child support order, your order will end automatically.
When a young adult is no longer financially dependent on his or her parents, he or she is considered to be “emancipated.” If your child gets married, joins the military, establishes his or her own permanent residence, or takes on a full-time job that pays him or her enough money to live without your financial aid, he or she is emancipated.
Talk to your child and your former spouse about an appropriate time to end your child support payments. Your child might have a very different idea than you have about an appropriate date to end your support – make your thoughts and goals known so you do not surprise him or her by terminating your order. To get started on tackling this often-difficult topic, contact an experienced New Jersey child support attorney. At The Law Office of Eric B. Hannum Esq., LLC., we are equipped to answer your questions and help you make the necessary changes to your child support order. Give us a call or visit us on the web today to get started. We serve parents and families in Ocean, Mercer, Monmouth, Middlesex, and Burlington counties.