Child support for child over 18

Asked almost 6 years ago - Center Hill, FL

My child will graduate this year. The divorce decree states child support will stop but that both parents will share college expenses. Can I ask for child support to continue if child lives at home and commutes to college? Father has not paid half of medical and dental bills not paid by my insurance, nor increased any amount due to increase cost of medical insurance, car insurance (due to child now driving), or several other cost of living increases. We divorced in 2003. With child graduating in May, is it too late to request changes to child support.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Shawn C Newman

    Contributor Level 14

    2

    Lawyers agree

    3

    Answered . Thanks for your question. Since I am an attorney, I cannot ethically give you specific legal advice on your situation, since you are not my client, but I can only provide you with general information that you may find helpful.

    In Florida, child support ends when the child reaches the age of 18, unless A) the child is still a dependent, is between the ages of 18 and 19 and is still in high school, performing in good faith with a reasonable expectation of graduation before the age of 19, or B) the dependent person is beyond the age of 18 years when such dependency is because of a mental or physical incapacity which began prior to such person reaching majority.

    You certainly have a claim for the missed financial support payments, but my advice is to work with a family attorney that can go through the facts of your situation and advise you directly.

    Best of luck to you and your family,

    Shawn C. Newman, Esq.
    Attorney At Law
    1881 NE 26th Street, Suite 212E
    Wilton Manors, FL 33305
    (877) 552-9385
    Shawn@ShawnNewman.com

  2. Margery Ellen Golant

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . No. Florida law provides that children over age 18 are not entitled to child support unless they are still in high school and likely to graduate by age 19, and in such case, the court may, at its option, extend the support until the child graduates prior to age 19.

    However, if the father was obligated by the decree to pay non-covered medical expenses or to pay a cost of living-related increase, you can enforce this obligation. If there was no provision for increase in your agreement, you were free to ask the court for a modification of support based on changed circumstances

    You should consult a local family law attorney, and take your agreement with you. It is possible that, after hearing all the facts and details, the attorney may see other options relating to the financial situation that are impossible to evaluate here.

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