State law generally requires that child support payments be made until a child reaches the age of 18, marking adulthood, or he or she graduates from high school. There are, however, several important exceptions. At The Webb Family Law Firm, P.C., our attorneys counsel clients through the nuances of ceasing payments in Dallas, Texas, and help them notify their Child Support Enforcement Officer of the intended change.
In certain situations, parents are able to stop making child support payments before a son or daughter turns 18. Emancipation may be granted at age 16 or 17 if the child:
- Joins the military
- Gets married
- Is eligible and petitions the court for independence
When any of these conditions are met, the minor is considered an adult and parents are free to discontinue child support payments.
Conversely, there are scenarios in which support can be ordered past the age of 18. If an adult child is physically or mentally disabled, for example, payments may need to continue indefinitely. In such cases, the court evaluates current and future financial and caregiving needs before deciding on the appropriate time, if any, to cease child support. We are highly skilled in representing clients facing these types of sensitive matters.
Procedure For Stopping Payment
No matter what circumstances clients face, our lawyers are there to help them settle and stop payments when appropriate. Child support obligations do not automatically end. We help parents petition the Domestic Relations Office no later than 45 days before they intend to stop payments. Then, the overseeing Child Support Enforcement Officer reviews the case and informs the other parent. He or she has 15 days to make objections. Additionally, any missed payments must still be made, even if a child turns 18, including accrued interest before a parent is free of child support obligations.
Compassionate Counsel For Families
Regardless of what kinds of legal hurdles prospective clients face, we invite them to schedule an initial consultation with our committed team by phone at 972-863-0279 or using our convenient online request form.