Falls City, NE asked in Family Law and Child Support for Nebraska

Q: In Nebraska, if a child is 18 and moves out of his mother's home, can father's support go to kid instead of mom?

I know child support must be paid until age 19 in Nebraska, but why would the mother get the money if the child no longer lives there after age 18? Can it go directly to the 18 year old child instead?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Julie Fowler
Julie Fowler
  • Omaha, NE
  • Licensed in Nebraska

A: It is actually not uncommon for a parent to still be ordered to pay child support even though the teenage child is no longer living with the custodial parent. The most common situation is when the teen is living in the dorms at the freshman year of college. So long as the custodial parent is still financially helping to support the child, such as helping with expenses which could include things like room, board, car insurance, cell phone, costs, etc. then the Court will generally say the child support stays in place so both parties are continuing to support the child until the child turns 19.

However, if the child has moved out and is self-supporting, you can ask the Court to terminate the child support. If the custodial parent is no longer financially helping out the child, then the Court can terminate the child support as no money is being used on the child anyways. The child support wouldn't go to the child but would terminate as the child is self-supporting and the money is no longer being used by the custodial parent for the child. Generally this is done by a motion to terminate child support, but can vary by your situation. The Court generally won't retroactive terminate the child support in these situations. Thus, you generally need to file the action now if you want the child support terminated and believe you qualify due to the child being self-supporting.

Child support isn't owed to a child, but to the parent who is supporting the child. Thus, the Court wouldn't likely change the payee of child support from the parent to the child.

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