If you are a parent paying child support, it may seem like those payments will never end, and that’s especially true if you don’t agree with the amount the court ordered you to pay.
But child support does end, and that completion date may be different depending on the circumstances.
Let’s take a look at the factors that affect the termination date of your child support payments, so that you’re aware when your child support responsibilities end.
Situations That Terminate Your Child Support Payments
In 2010, the state of Florida established a law that required every child support order to contain an automatic termination provision that provided the date on which payments would end.
In Florida, child support payments typically end when the child turns 18. However, if the child is older than 18 but still in high school and on schedule to graduate, the child support usually extends until the child graduates.
But if the child is mentally or physically handicapped and unable to live on his or her own, then child support payments will continue until the parent who cares for the child agrees that payments can end. If the parent does not agree to the termination of child support, then the parent who is paying must do so for the rest of that child’s life. The issue of child support paid to an adult child should be decided by the court, prior to the child reaching majority.
Child support can also end if a child becomes emancipated, which refers to a child who has been granted freedom from parental control before he or she turns 18. Emancipation can only occur through a court order that determines that this arrangement is in the best interests of the child.
How To Legally End Your Child Support Payments
If you’re paying child support directly to the other parent without the involvement of the state, then you can simply stop sending a check on the termination date
But if your payments are taken directly out of your paycheck by the state, then you must obtain a court order from a judge that stops the automatic withdrawals.
If you fail to do so, the system will continue to automatically deduct the support payments from your account.
Help With Child Support Issues
The issues involved in a divorce can often become challenging and emotional. Child support issues may become challenging, especially when the parent paying the support disagrees with the amount due. That’s why it is always best, whether you are the parent who is receiving child support, or you are the parent who is paying the support, to hire an experienced family law firm to handle any issues arising out of child support. Eric C. Cheshire has spent nearly 30 years negotiating child support matters, and that experience makes him a powerful advocate for your claim. Please call 561-295-3693 for a confidential consultation.