How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Roger Your Own Question
Roger
Roger, Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 31765
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
6704987
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Roger is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Child support is being paid...but college wasn't discussed

Customer Question

child support is being paid...but college wasn't discussed in our stip of settlemtent. Emaancipation event was discussed, but didn't include support beyond 21 while child was in college to age 24 BUT I understand that in NY the law CAN include that the child be supported while in college. He wont pay for college, so I want to ask the court to just extend child support to beyond 21st birthday, until age 24 even though its not stipulated. Am I wasting my time?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

Hi - my name is ***** ***** I'll be glad to assist.

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).

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thats not my question. :-(
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
my question is can support continue beyond age 21 in light of the fact that the child is not emancipated due to being in college.
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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......

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

The only way support can be granted past age 21 is if the parent voluntarily agrees to provide support.

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I read in NY the law states until age 24. and the child support collection unit representative states the same.. I guess this service is not for NY thanks anyway.
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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).

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
which court? according to the Family Court support magistrate, family court cannot make him pay for college only supreme court. She said, during our support case in july, when your daughter (who just moved back with me after an abuse issue was reported) is enrolled, come back to modify your support order. But I assumed it meant to lengthen the duration of support since the family court cant make him pay for college. I don't know what she meant then.
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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.

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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).

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
this was something she "said" during the court visit... nothing she wrote into the order. I am very confused.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thank you anyway.
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

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.