Virginia Beach, VA asked in Child Custody for Virginia

Q: In va if my child is over 18 and decides to go to college am I still required to pay child support?

In va, if the child is over 18, and I have arrears that was with the child support. Once the child support is corrected because he is over 18 can the arrears be reduced weekly to a more realistic amount, I have had some changes since my last modification, I am now married, my wife has had 3 strokes, I have to be home at night to take care of her, her medications are pricey...i need help.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Vienna, VA
  • Licensed in Virginia

A: Va. Code § 20-124.2, "C. The court may order that support be paid for any child of the parties. Upon request of either party, the court may order that such support payments be made to a special needs trust or an ABLE savings trust account as defined in § 23.1-700. The court shall also order that support will continue to be paid for any child over the age of 18 who is (i) a full-time high school student, (ii) not self-supporting, and (iii) living in the home of the party seeking or receiving child support until such child reaches the age of 19 or graduates from high school, whichever first occurs. The court may also order that support be paid or continue to be paid for any child over the age of 18 who is (a) severely and permanently mentally or physically disabled, and such disability existed prior to the child reaching the age of 18 or the age of 19 if the child met the requirements of clauses (i), (ii), and (iii); (b) unable to live independently and support himself; and (c) residing in the home of the parent seeking or receiving child support. In addition, the court may confirm a stipulation or agreement of the parties which extends a support obligation beyond when it would otherwise terminate as provided by law."

Va. Code § 20-60.3, "16. A statement that if any arrearages for child support, including interest or fees, exist at the time the youngest child included in the order emancipates, payments shall continue in the total amount due (current support plus amount applied toward arrearages) at the time of emancipation until all arrearages are paid."

So, the child support obligation stops at age 18 unless the child is in high school, then it is graduation or 19, whichever comes first.

However, child support payments continue as is until any arrearages with interest are paid off.

No obligation to pay for college unless there is a written agreement between the parents to that effect.

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