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Ask Dave Kennett Your Own Question
Dave Kennett
Dave Kennett, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27689
Experience:  25 years experience as practicing attorney
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when a child is finished school two months early is that when

Customer Question

when a child is finished school two months early is that when child support is finished or do i have to wait till graduation she is 18 graduation is in may
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

DearCustomer- This depends on the language of the child support order from the court. Most orders will say something to the effect "support will continue until the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school whichever is later". In this case she doesn't graduate until May so my opinion would be that the support would end at that time. If the support order says "finishes school" then you can argue that it should end now.

 

David Kennett - JD - Attorney at Law

Dave Kennett and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
This is what it states, Attainnment of her eighteenth birthday or up to her nieteenth birthday so long as the child is, in fact, dependant, between the ages of 18 and 19, still in school and performing in good faith with a reasonable expectation of graduation before the age of 19.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

Then you may have an argument that it ends now since it only says "reasonable expectation" of graduation. If she has finished and is expected to graduate you can argue that the support should end now. You may want to go ahead and make your motion to terminate since it takes time to get before the court and you will most likely have to make this motion after graduation to get it to stop since the court isn't keeping track of her progress at school.

 

Dave

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

This is what it states, Attainment of her eighteenth birthday or up to her nineteenth birthday so long as the child is, in fact, dependant, between the ages of 18 and 19, still in school and perfroming in good faith with a reasonable expectation of graduation before the age of 19

Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

Well she obviously has a "reasonable expectation" of graduation before her 19th birthday so I think the support should end now. Certainly it will end in May so go ahead and file the motion to get the process moving.

 

Dave

Dave Kennett and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
My husband pays directly to his ex-wife every month. So do we just stop payments? The child finished school March 26 and his ex- wife is not the kind to inform us of when she finished school.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
My husband pays directly to his ex-wife every month. So do we just stop payments? The child finished school March 26 and his ex-wife is not the knod to inform us of when she finished school.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

If there is no court order then he can just stop making payments. If she disagrees she would have to file a motion with the court. To be safe he may want to make a motion to the court anyway since that will prevent her from filing a contempt once the payments stop.

 

Dave

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
So you are saying that April first no payment and how do we make a motion to court, where do we go? How long does that take.
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

Well you would have to either prepare the motion or hire an attorney since we are not permitted to actually represent clients from this website. Once the payments stop I would presume she will file a motion for contempt. You can wait until that happens and then defend that motion based on the fact that the decree says what it says. I was only thinking that if he filed first it would preempt her motion for contempt. It will probably take a couple of months at least to get a hearing date.

 

Dave

Dave Kennett and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
So if I wait till she files comtempt, what is worst that could happen to me and will I win on what the decree says or is it just easier to pay her and stop payment in May
Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.

I never, ever say anyone will "win" a court case since there are always too many variables and facts that can come up.I will say that from the facts presented you have a very could case to defend yourself against contempt based on your child's finishing of school and expectation of graduation.

 

The worst thing is that you would have to pay the child support until graduation and probably your ex's attorney fees for the motion. I really don't think you would lose but, as I said nothing in court is a sure thing.

 

Dave

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

One last thing, I called the school today to find out if for sure if she was finished and they told me that she has early exit from school, which I think, that she is completely finished school. They also told me they would not give me anymore information because I was not on the list. I would like to know why she would take me for comtempt when she knows, that in fact ,she is finished school.

Expert:  Dave Kennett replied 7 years ago.
I didn't say she would but she could always try. People do strange things and in the practice of law I can never say never. You are talking about 2 or 3 months of support at max so I can't imagine anyone going to court over that but, as I said, people do strange things. - Dave