Bessemer, AL asked in Child Custody for Alabama

Q: What is the definition of 'self supporting' according to the state of Alabama?

My daughter has graduated high school and will be attending college in GA beginning August 2020. She turns 18 next month (June 2020). She will be living on campus, with a food plan, and work a part time job while in school. Do I still have to pay her father child support even though he is not paying for any of her expenses while she's in school? (She is in school with a scholarship and I am paying the other expenses that the scholarship does not cover even though I am not ordered to do so in my child support papers.)

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2 Lawyer Answers
Shane Michael Oncale
PREMIUM
Shane Michael Oncale
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Birmingham, AL
  • Licensed in Alabama

A: These are the kind of situation I hate because the explanation never seems to suit common sense. Common sense would seem to dictate that with what she is provided she is more than "self sufficient" but most of the time the outcome turns on the smallest of things. Is she on the father's health or car insurance? Is he furnishing clothes? On breaks from school is she returning to the father's home? Note that this is usually the father paying the mother scenario and that could play a rule in the sometimes strained interpretation and also note as we are only talking about a year of support. 18 to 19 there are not a great deal of these cases appeal and reported on the books so the outcome could vary greatly on the jurisdiction and the judge. My advice in these situations in always to talk to see if a deal can be struck. Will the father just let you pay the child support directly to the child for the various support you are providing directly? Regardless the court must sign off on child support ending or you leave yourself exposed. Good luck.

Mr. James Parrish Coleman
Mr. James Parrish Coleman
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Robertsdale, AL

A: The short answer is yes. The only way to get you where you want to be is if she asks to be emancipated, which she can do if she is self supporting and 18 years old.

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