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January

Who is Responsible for College Tuition in Divorce?

By Iafrate & Salassa

Piggy bank with college fund for when determining tuition payments with Child Support Lawyer Sterling Heights

In many divorce cases, one parent is ordered to pay child support to their former spouse. This is often a contentious issue, as many people do not know how much support they will have to pay, or how long they will have to pay it. One of the biggest questions that comes up is whether a parent has to pay for college tuition as part of their child support. Like with so many other legal issues, the answer to that question is that it depends. In most cases, child support does not include college tuition, but there are certain circumstances in which that can change.

Michigan Does Not Include College Tuition in Child Support

Under Michigan law, all parents are required to financially support their children until they turn 18 years old. This requirement remains in place whether the parents are married or have gotten a divorce. Child support can include the cost of child care, health care for the child, educational costs, and even expenses related to pregnancy. Due to the fact that parents are only required to financially support their children until they turn 18 years old, college tuition is not part of child support.

There is one exception to the law. If a child reaches the age of 18 and is still in high school full-time, the parent paying support must continue providing that support until the child graduates. Even in these cases, child support will end when the child is 19 years and six months old, regardless of whether or not they are still in school.

Agreements on College Tuition

In some cases, the two parents may have already reached an agreement about child support. For example, before the couple got married, they may have drafted a premarital agreement that stipulates that one or both spouses will be responsible for paying a portion of the child’s college tuition. When such an agreement is in place, the parties that entered into the contract are bound by its terms.

It is possible to contest these agreements, particularly if the provisions within it are unfair to one party or if one party was coerced into signing the agreement. A Michigan family lawyer can review the facts of the case, as well as the agreement, to determine which, if any, party is responsible for paying a child’s college tuition.

A Family Lawyer in Michigan Can Help With Your Child Support Issue

If you are divorced and concerned about whether or not you will have to pay child support, or how much you will receive, our Michigan family lawyer at Iafrate & Salassa can help with your case. Our skilled attorney will advise on the child support laws of the state and whether or not you will have to pay it. If there is already a child support order in place, we can also help you modify it to reflect the current needs of you and your child. Call us today or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.

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