When Child Support Usually Ends
Child support typically ends when the child turns 18 or completes secondary school (high school), whichever is later. However, if the child has not graduated from high school by the time she is 20 years old, then child support will stop when she turns 20. What this means is that if your child is still attending high-school after she turns 18, you will be paying child support until she turns 20 so long as she continues to attend school. This rule is actually derived from the definitions section of Minnesota law.
You Can Negotiate a Different Ending Date
Parents have the ability to negotiate terms that require child support to continue beyond when it would normally end. For example, they could agree that child support will be paid through college. However, this is NOT required by the law, and great caution should be used when agreeing to such a term. A parent always has the ability to provide more money, or pay for college, or any other expenses a parent may wish to contribute towards. There does not need to be a court order requiring him/her to do so, and typically I advise against it. Further, regardless of any privately negotiated agreement, a court can later change the order if it determines the agreed upon order is no longer in the child’s best interest.
Lastly, if a child is incapable of self-support because of a physical or mental condition, the obligation to pay child support can continue indefinitely.
Carol Mayer is an experienced family law attorney who can help make sure your rights are protected and you obtain the best possible result in the process. Carol Mayer represents clients in all metropolitan counties and cities including but not limited to Sibley, Carver, Scott, Anoka, Hennepin, Stearns, Blue Earth, LeSueur, Brown, Nicollet, Arlington, Gaylord, McLeod, Chaska, Hutchinson, Mankato, Shakopee, Prior Lake, Belle Plaine, Jordan, and many more throughout Minnesota.