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Attorney & Mediator
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Non custodial Indiana parent of soon to be 18

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Non custodial Indiana parent of soon to be 18 year old son. What are my child support obligations after 18th birthday while child is in high school? Include further obligation response if child does not attend college and inversely if child chooses to attend college?
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Attorney & Mediator replied 9 years ago.
In Indiana child support obligations termination when the child turns 21. If the child is 18 but does not go to college, then child support can cease at age 18, if the child is capable of supporting themselves through employment. If the 18 year old is only working a part-time job or their income is not sufficient to support themselves, then support will be continued at a modified rate instead of terminating all together. Support can continue, regardless if said adult child is not going to college.

The code section for Indiana is below regarding this issue for your review.

IC 31-16-6-6
Termination or modification of child support; emancipation of child
Sec. 6. (a) The duty to support a child under this chapter ceases when the child becomes twenty-one (21) years of age unless any of the following conditions occurs:
(1) The child is emancipated before becoming twenty-one (21) years of age. In this case the child support, except for the educational needs outlined in section 2(a)(1) of this chapter, terminates at the time of emancipation, although an order for educational needs may continue in effect until further order of the court.
(2) The child is incapacitated. In this case the child support continues during the incapacity or until further order of the court.
(3) The child:
(A) is at least eighteen (18) years of age;
(B) has not attended a secondary school or postsecondary educational institution for the prior four (4) months and is not enrolled in a secondary school or postsecondary educational institution;
(C) is or is capable of supporting himself or herself through employment.

In this case the child support terminates upon the court's finding that the conditions prescribed in this subdivision exist. However, if the court finds that the conditions set forth in clauses (A) through (C) are met but that the child is only partially supporting or is capable of only partially supporting himself or herself, the court may order that support be modified instead of terminated.
(b) For purposes of determining if a child is emancipated under subsection (a)(1), if the court finds that the child:
(1) has joined the United States armed services;
(2) has married; or
(3) is not under the care or control of:
(A) either parent; or
(B) an individual or agency approved by the court;
the court shall find the child emancipated and terminate the child support.

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