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Lawrence D. Gorin
Lawrence D. Gorin, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1507
Experience:  30+ years family law experience. QDROs, UIFSA, UCCJEA expertise.
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How do I get child support payments stopped for my daughter

Customer Question

How do I get child support payments stopped for my daughter that is now 18 and has graduated high school? She resides with mom in Illinois where the decree was transferred there in McHenry County. The original decree was filed in Missouri where I and her mom lived.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question.

I will do my best to assist you with your issue. While I am permitted to provide you with legal information, I am prohibited by JustAnswer.com as well as various state bar associations from giving specific legal advice, provide representation, or enter into an attorney-client relationship through this open and non-confidential forum. Do you understand and agree to these provisions as well as JustAnswer.com's disclaimer?

Sincerely,


Dimitry Alexander Kaplun, Esq.

Expert:  Lawrence D. Gorin replied 4 years ago.
YOUR QUESTION:
How do I get child support payments stopped for my daughter that is now 18 and has graduated high school? She resides with mom in Illinois where the decree was transferred there in McHenry County. The original decree was filed in Missouri where I and her mom lived.

ANSWER:
The duration of your child support obligation is controlled by the law of the state that originally established the support obligation (the “issuing state”). In your case, that state is Missouri.

Under Missouri law, Mo. Rev. Stat. (MRS) § 454.956 (a), “The law of the issuing state governs the nature, extent, amount, and DURATION of current payments and other obligations of support and the payment of arrearages under the order.”


As for the “duration” of child support under Missouri law, it goes until age 21 if the child is still going to school. Specifically, MRS § 452.340.5, provides continuation a child support past age 18, potentially to age 21, for a qualifying child who is pursuing his/her educational endeavors.

In full, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 452.340.5 says:
---> If when a child reaches age eighteen, the child is enrolled in and attending a secondary school program of instruction, the parental support obligation shall continue, if the child continues to attend and progresses toward completion of said program, until the child completes such program or reaches age twenty-one, whichever first occurs. If the child is enrolled in an institution of vocational or higher education not later than October first following graduation from a secondary school or completion of a graduation equivalence degree program and so long as the child enrolls for and completes at least twelve hours of credit each semester, not including the summer semester, at an institution of vocational or higher education and achieves grades sufficient to reenroll at such institution, the parental support obligation shall continue until the child completes his or her education, or until the child reaches the age of twenty-one, whichever first occurs. To remain eligible for such continued parental support, at the beginning of each semester the child shall submit to each parent a transcript or similar official document provided by the institution of vocational or higher education which includes the courses the child is enrolled in and has completed for each term, the grades and credits received for each such course, and an official document from the institution listing the courses which the child is enrolled in for the upcoming term and the number of credits for each such course. When enrolled in at least twelve credit hours, if the child receives failing grades in half or more of his or her courseload in any one semester, payment of child support may be terminated and shall not be eligible for reinstatement. Upon request for notification of the child's grades by the noncustodial parent, the child shall produce the required documents to the noncustodial parent within thirty days of receipt of grades from the education institution. If the child fails to produce the required documents, payment of child support may terminate without the accrual of any child support arrearage and shall not be eligible for reinstatement. If the circumstances of the child manifestly dictate, the court may waive the October first deadline for enrollment required by this subsection. If the child is enrolled in such an institution, the child or parent obligated to pay support may petition the court to amend the order to direct the obligated parent to make the payments directly to the child. As used in this section, an "institution of vocational education" means any postsecondary training or schooling for which the student is assessed a fee and attends classes regularly. "Higher education" means any community college, college, or university at which the child attends classes regularly. A child who has been diagnosed with a developmental disability, as defined in section 630.005, RSMo, or whose physical disability or diagnosed health problem limits the child's ability to carry the number of credit hours prescribed in this subsection, shall remain eligible for child support so long as such child is enrolled in and attending an institution of vocational or higher education, and the child continues to meet the other requirements of this subsection. A child who is employed at least fifteen hours per week during the semester may take as few as nine credit hours per semester and remain eligible for child support so long as all other requirements of this subsection are complied with.

By the way, even if this matter were controlled by Illinois law, support would not necessarily stop at age 18. 750 Ill. Law. Con. Stat. § 5/513 provides that the court may make provisions for the education expenses of the children of the marriage, whether of minor or majority age. Specifies that post-secondary support terminates when the child receives a baccalaureate degree.

NOTE: I realize that this answer may not be entirely to your liking, and I regret being the bearer of information that you really don’t want to hear. But it would be unfair to you and unprofessional of me were I to provide you with anything less than truthful and honest information. I hope you understand.

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Edited by Maria-moderator on 10/12/2010 at 6:21 PM EST
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
WAs wanting information in regards XXXXX XXXXX law not Missouri as I already have that information
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
After my ex-wife moved her and the kids to McHenry County , Illinois she took me back to court to change/register child custody orders to Illinois as home state as neither one of us live in Missouri now. The court order that I have from that in 2006 is that Missouri judgement is dismissed and Illinois is home state and this court will have all jurisdiction under Article II of the UCCJEA. This action happened when I received custody of our children in Missouri, it was over turned as Missouri is no longer governing state and has no jurisdiction over paternity, custody and child support. So what I have been told so far is that falls under Illinois law and that is where I have had difficulty obtaining information. I already had the state of Missouri, I was needing information from state of Illinois.
Support of my daughter will not be stopped when child support ends as I continue to supply her with what she needs beyond what goes to her mother for childsupport as my daugher is not receiving that from her mother. I am just not wanting mother to receive the full 50% of my paycheck that is going directly to her since I and my daughter who works 2 jobs pay for food, clothing, car, books etc. above the child support money
So when the state of Illinois stops taking the money directly out of my check I can then give directly to my daughter.

Expert:  ANDREA, replied 4 years ago.

Hi, I see that you asked that your question be relisted several hours ago, and would like to help, if I may

 

The Answer I am providing is information only and does not constitute the practice of law in jurisdictions where I am not licensed to practice. JustAnswer's policy and State Bar restrictions prohibit any attorney-client relationship, giving legal advice and client representation though this forum.

 

 

ANSWER

 

 

You asked how you could have child support payments stopped in the State of Illinois for your daughter who has reached the age of 18.

 

 

Under Illinois Statutes, 750 Ill. Law. Con. Stat. § 5/513, you can terminate child support when the child reaches the age of 18, or if the child is still attending high school, when the child reaches 19. In certain instances, the Court may make the parents liable for the child's college expenses and tuition.

 

You can still help your daughter with tuition, without having to pay it to her mother, or have it taken out of your weekly or monthly salary. File a Petition to Terminate Child Support. At the hearing, tell the Judge that you do not mind helping your daughter, but you have seen that your daughter does not receive any of the child support you were paying all those years. Also tell the Judge that as proof of what you are saying, your daughter is working two jobs , with her mother not giving her any of the amount that you had been paying in child support.

 

If the original Order for Child Support provided for your income to be attached each pay period, ask the Judge to include in his Order Terminating Child Support a provision for the rescission of your wage attachment. Then you would serve it on your payroll department.

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Expert:  Lawrence D. Gorin replied 4 years ago.
FURTHER ANSWER:
OK. Sorry for the confusion. I did not fully understand (as I now do) that "neither one of us lives in Missouri now." That makes a big difference. And I am assuming that you BOTH now live in Illinois. (If that assumption is incorrect, and you live in a state otyher than Missouri or Illinois, please advise, as that would slightly change the legal analysis provided here.)

It is important to understand that there are TWO major laws applicable to your case. First is the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA). Second, is the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA).

UCCJEA and UIFSA are each totally independent from the other. Both sets of laws have been enacted in Missouri as well as in Illinois.

The Illinois version of the UCCJEA is condified as 750 ILCS 36/101 to 36/402.

The Illinois version of the UIFSA is codified as 750 ILCS 22/101 to 22/902.

UCCJEA governs issues regarding custody, parenting time, and visitation when more than one state may be involved. UCCJEA provides the “template” for determining which state will have decision-making authority (“jurisdiction”) over custody and visitation time issues. Under UCCJEA, jurisdiction is generally based on which state qualifies as the child’s “home state” (as that phrase is defined in the UCCJEA law).

In contrast, UIFSA is the law that governs issues of child support when more than one state may be involved. Which state has jurisdiction over a child support order is generally based on factors that have nothing to do with which state is the child’s “home state.” Rather, UIFSA provides a somewhat complicated procedural determination based on the state of residence to the parent and whether either parent continues to be a resident of the “issuing state.” Further, even if neither parent any longer resides in the “issuing state,” that state’s laws may restrict the extent to which another state may modify the issuing state’s support order.

Termination of an existing child support order constitutes a “modification” of that order. (A modification to zero.) In order for Illinois to modify the child support provisions of the Missouri divorce judgment so as to terminate the child support provisions thereof, Illinois must have “subject matter jurisdiction.”

Under 750 ILCS 22/611, Illinois has jurisdiction to modify the child support provisions of the Missouri divorce judgment since neither parent (nor the child) any longer reside in Missouri AND both parents and the child now reside in Illinois.

HOWEVER, 750 ILCS 22/611(d) says that “In a proceeding to modify a child-support order, the law of the state that is determined to have issued the initial controlling order governs the duration of the obligation of support.”

Consequently --- given the facts you are presenting --- the duration of the child support obligation (and whether it ends at age 18 or perhaps continues to age 21) is controlled by Missouri law, even thought the support proceeding is taking place in Illinois.

Finally, for more information, instructions and FORMS, try the following website:
How to modify a child support order in Illinois
http://www.law.siu.edu/selfhelp/info/childsupport/modsup.pdf

===========================
Having answered your original question and now your follow-up question(s), it is appropriate for you to now click the green “ACCEPT” button, if you have not already done so, so that I may be paid for the answer and information provided. And I thank you in advance for doing so.

Edited by Lawrence D. Gorin on 9/2/2010 at 10:36 AM EST
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question.

I believe I was the original Expert on this post, but through a mixup I was unable to respond. My apologies.

After reviewing the answer that the previous Expert had provided to you, I am forced to politely disagree with his assessment. Here's why:

What you are seeking in Illinois pertains to how to terminate support, and not how to modify it. Illinois law provides that a Petition to Modify Child Support is appropriate only for an increase, decrease, or some other change in the existing child support Order . If you wished to stop paying child support altogether, you have to file a Petition to Terminate Child Support, and not a Petition to Modify Child Support.

Please let me know if there is any other way I can assist you.

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 9/2/2010 at 2:17 PM EST
Expert:  Lawrence D. Gorin replied 4 years ago.
FURTHER -- REVISED/CORRECTED -- ANSWER:
Mr. Kaplun is correct, at least as it pertains to an Illinois court terminating the support provisions of an Illinois court order (which is not what this case involves). In that situation, a Petition to Terminate Child Support would do the trick. Inherently, termination of support is accomplished by modifying the previously-issued court order so as to reduce the amount to Zero Dollars and making no provision for further accrual of the support obligation.

Do-it-yourself forms are generally available from the circuit court clerk's office.

The precise form to be used varies from county to county.

Wheaton County and Du Page County use a "check box" form titled as a
Petition to
____ Increase; or
____ Reduce; or
____ Terminate Child Support.

Text of the form says:
WHEREFORE, I ask that the Court: MODIFY the Judgment provisions and
____increase
____reduce
____terminate child support.

Will County uses a MOTION TO TERMINATE SUPPORT.

Can't find a form specific to McHenry County. Suggest you check with the clerk of the court.

Of course, these forms deal with termination of support under Illinois law pertaining to a support order issued by an Illinois court. But the facts being presented here involve a request for the Illinois court to terminate the child support provisions of a Missouri order. The matter is subject to the substantive and procedural provisions of the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act and the federal Full Faith and Credit for Child Support Orders Act pertianing to one state's authority to render orders affecting the judgment of another state.

Also keep in mind that it is not at all unusual to end-up with a situation where Illinois has CUSTODY jurisdiction under UCCJEA but does not have SUPPORT jurisidiction under UIFSA. Lawyers and litigants (and judges, too) need to be conversant with both UCCJEA and UIFSA, as well as federal Full Faith and Credit for Child Support Orders Act (FFCCSOA) and the federal Parental Kidnapping and Prevention Act (PKPA) when dealing with cases involving parents who live in different states (or parents who both no longer live in the originating state). Unfortunately, all too often they are not.

LDG

Edited by Lawrence D. Gorin on 9/2/2010 at 8:11 PM EST
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your follow-up.

I am afraid I once again have to modify the previous Expert's answer. While the Full Faith and Credit Support Orders Act is relevant in terms of enforcement, it does NOT govern modification, cessation, or reduction of support, other than what is directly stated in the support order itself. That is governed under procedural law in the state where the modification or termination order is brought forth. As this case is now governed under Illinois law, at least in terms of procedural matters (that is, what forms to file, and what courts to go to for the hearing), Illinois forms are utilized. (See Erie Railroad Co. v. Tompkins, 304 U.S. 64)

Because of that, the Illinois Petition to Terminate Child Support is required in this situation. Contact your courthouse, ask to speak to the clerk on duty, explain the situation, and he or she will be able to provide you with the documentation needed. Get the forms, fill them out, and file them.

Good luck.

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 9/2/2010 at 9:09 PM EST
Expert:  Lawrence D. Gorin replied 4 years ago.
FURTHER ANSWER:
Mr. Kaplun is perhaps not fully understanding the points I am making.

First, my prior post said that “Lawyers and litigants (and judges, too) need to be conversant with both UCCJEA and UIFSA, as well as the FFCCSOA and the PKPA when dealing with cases involving parents who live in different states (or parents who both no longer live in the originating state).” The point being made was simply that lawyers and litigants need to be conversant with the referenced statutes, at least to the extent that they are or may be relevant to the facts of the particular case under consideration.

Second, as to the facts presented here, the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act

The JA customer in this case seeks to have the Illinois court stop (terminate) the child support obligation that was established by a Missouri court order now that his daughter has attained age 18 and has graduated from high school.

750 ILCS 22/613 is the Illinois enactment of UIFSA § 613: The statute says:
----> (a) If all of the parties who are individuals reside in this State and the child does not reside in the issuing state, a tribunal of this State has jurisdiction to enforce and to modify the issuing state's child-support order in a proceeding to register that order.
----> (b) A tribunal of this State exercising jurisdiction under this Section shall apply the provisions of Articles 1 and 2, this Article, and the procedural and substantive law of this State to the proceeding for enforcement or modification. Articles 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8 do not apply.

As explained in the Official Commentary to UIFSA § 613, "This section is designed to make it clear that when the issuing State no longer has continuing, exclusive jurisdiction and the obligor and obligee reside in the same State, a tribunal of that State has jurisdiction to modify the child support order and assume continuing, exclusive jurisdiction."

The Commentary to UIFSA § 613 further explains, however, that while subsection (b) [750 ILCS 22/613(b)] withdraws authority to apply most of the substantive and procedural provisions of UIFSA to cases where all parties and the child now reside in the same state, "the provision in Section 611(c) [750 ILCS 22/611(c)] forbidding modification of nonmodifiable aspects of the controlling order applies. For example, the duration of the support obligation remains fixed despite the subsequent residence of all parties in a new State with a different duration of child support."

Under Missouri law, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 452.340.5, "If when a child reaches age eighteen * * * the child is enrolled in an institution of vocational or higher education not later than October first following graduation from a secondary school * * * and so long as the child enrolls for and completes at least twelve hours of credit each semester, not including the summer semester, at an institution of vocational or higher education and achieves grades sufficient to reenroll at such institution, the parental support obligation shall continue until the child completes his or her education, or until the child reaches the age of twenty-one, whichever first occurs."

Thus, under Missouri law -- in contrast to Illinois law --- court-ordered child support does not automatically stop at age 18, at least not if the child is enrolled in an institution of vocational or higher education not later than October first following graduation from a secondary school.

And 750 ILCS 22/611(c) says, in relevant part, “A tribunal of this State [Illinois] may not modify any aspect of a child-support order that may not be modified under the law of the issuing state [Missouri], including the duration of the obligation of support.

Consequently, as any good lawyer who is conversant and experienced with interstate child support cases would understand, UIFSA has a direct bearing on the facts being presented here (assuming both parents and the child now reside in Illinois.)

(UIFSA), has direct application. BotXXXXX XXXXXne: The duration of child support as mandated under Missouri law continues past age 18 and up to age 21 for an otherwise eligible and qualifying child. If the Missouri support order is not subject to termination under Missouri law simply by virtue of the child attaining age 18, even though such would be the case under Illinois law, the courts of Illinois are not permitted to apply the Illinois support duration law to the Missouri child support order.

LDG


Edited by Lawrence D. Gorin on 9/4/2010 at 4:52 AM EST

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