As discussed previously on our blog, the parent with primary custody of their children will most likely receive child support from the other parent. One of the reasons regular child support payments are so important is because it allows the custodial parent to create a schedule and cultivate a consistent routine around it. For example, extracurricular activities or childcare services can be scheduled based on knowing how much one is going to receive and when. Therefore, not knowing when such important payments are going to be terminated can cause instability for not only the parent but especially the child.

In most states, child support ends when the child turns 18 or goes to college. However, this is not always the case. It is important to know when child support is legally supposed to end, because not only do steps have to be taken to terminate it, but ending it before required (or continuing to pay after) causes undo financial hardships for one parent or the other.

Almost all states allow child support to be terminated when the child reaches the age of majority. This refers to the legal age under state law when someone is no longer considered a minor. Where some states peg the age of majority at 18, some consider it to be 21. In Pennsylvania, parents must pay child support until the child reaches 18 years of age.

It’s also important to note that there are some situations that could extend child support payments. Cases like this include agreements when support is being used to pay for college, or cases where the child receiving support is disabled (the courts consider this a form of economic hardship).

Do you need help navigating the maze of establishing a mutually beneficial child support plan? Contact our office today for your FREE consultation!