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A court can award educational expenses, such as for college, BUT a parent may not be directed to pay child support and/or contribute toward college education expenses for a child who is 21 years of age or older absent express agreement to do so.
N.Y. Dom. Rel. Law § 240(1-b)(c )(7).
In other words, the paying parent can be ordered to pay support until the child turns 21, but after that, the court cannot require/force the paying parent to contribute........the only way it can happen is if the paying parent voluntarily agrees to pay.
That's what I was trying to address above....sorry if it wasn't clear. But, a court cannot order support past age 21 under any circumstance......
The only way support can be granted past age 21 is if the parent voluntarily agrees to provide support.
The child is emancipated at age 18, and under NY law child support is granted until age 21, but after that, there's no authority for a court to order the paying parent to continue paying.
Here's a link that outlines the law, and that support stops at age 21: http://www.lawjaw.com/Long-Island-Divorce-Blog/2012/April/When-Does-Child-Support-Stop-in-New-York-.aspx
Here's the law and a cited case that supports the law:
Sec. 240 of Book 14, subd. 1-b(c)(7) states that when the court determines that the child requires educational expenses, such as for college or private school or for special enriched education, the court may award educational expenses. The non-custodial parent may be required to pay those expenses as the court directs, including direct payment to the school. However, a parent may not be directed to pay child support and/or contribute toward college education for a child who is 21 years of age or older absent express agreement to do so. Breslaw v. Breslaw, 156A.D.2d 627, 548 N.Y.S.2 815 (1989).
So, it appears that the law is that everything ends at age 21 UNLESS there is an express agreement by the paying parent to pay past that age.......maybe there is a provision in your child support order if that's what the collection unit representative told you....because that's the only way your child would be entitled to support past age 21.
I can't say what she meant.....all I can say is that the law (above) terminates child support at age 21 UNLESS the paying parent has agreed to pay longer.
You can file a motion for clarification with the court and ask the magistrate to clarify her order.....but it sounds like she also said she can't make him pay for college (past age 21).
If she said it, then it could still be in the transcript from the court proceeding. Nevertheless, the main thing is that the law doesn't allow for support past age 21.