Your child may be getting close to the age of 18, but if they have a disability, they may still need financial support from both of their parents. Since you are planning to get a divorce, one thing you will need to discuss is how you’d like to continue providing for your child in the future.
In many cases, children with special needs continue to receive child support well past their 18th birthdays. Sometimes, they receive it permanently, with no specific end date in mind.
Child support is a complex area of law, so it’s not surprising if you or your spouse hadn’t thought about it extending beyond your child’s 18th birthday. Here are some things that you should consider as your child continues to age, even if you’re no longer married.
Child support doesn’t always end at age 18
Your first topic to discuss is that child support doesn’t always end when your child turns 18, even when they don’t have special needs. Some children still get support, such as those who:
- Are still living at home
- Have special needs
- Are still attending high school full time
- Are not self-supporting
As you can see, it’s not just those with special needs who may need the additional financial support.
You can decide on ongoing support without the court’s involvement
While you can take this issue to court and have a judge decide how much ongoing support you or your ex-spouse should provide for your child, you should know that you and your spouse can decide how much money you need to pay in support before you divorce. If you can come to an agreement, your attorneys can send that to the court for approval.
Besides simple financial support, some other issues to discuss include who will pay for your child’s health care coverage, who will take them to or from medical appointments, who they will live with or where they will live and other specific issues in your situation. Your attorney can help you go over these important points, so you can discuss them and come up with solutions that are in the best interests of your child.