Cornelius, NC asked in Child Support for Virginia

Q: I understand the provisions of when child support ends in Va . My daughter Turned 18 and moved out of state. She meets

requirements to graduate, but won’t get her degree sent to her until June. Can I stop paying automatically or do I have to file with the court?

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

A: "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." Va. Code 20-124.2(C).

So graduation (or age 19) is when support that is ordered to be continued will end. But, the condition for continued payment includes being a full-time student, which she appears not to be.

Also, the child would have to be living with the parent receiving support, which may not be the case if the child left the state.

If you stop paying, the other side or Child Support Enforcement may file a motion to compel payment, You can defend with the above positions.

Or, you could file a motion to terminate support.

However, the courts are essentially closed for the next couple months anyway. So, neither their motion to enforce, nor your motion to terminate will be heard before July or so anyway.

You could do a written agreement to terminate support signed by both parents.

Be aware that if you keep paying, the likelihood of getting a refund is slim or none. Filing a motion to modify/terminate today will at lease save the retroactive effective date.

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