Parents in California are required to provide for their children’s needs. This can mean paying for their basic requirements, like keeping roofs over their heads and food in their bodies. When parents live together, they may easily share child-rearing duties. However, when parents separate, it can become much harder for them to share in their required parenting tasks.
Child support is a legal obligation that courts create when parents must share in the financial aspects of caring for their kids. After assessing the parents’ incomes and options for providing for their kids, the court will assign payment schedules to ensure that the custodial parents have enough money to get their children what they need. Different child support orders can take on different characteristics, and, for that reason, parents should discuss with their attorneys just what might happen when their child support orders are created.
Child support, however, does not usually last forever. Often, when a child turns 18 and graduates from high school, the child support orders will terminate. If a child reaches the age of 19, their parents can seek to end their child support payments, or when children seek legal independence, such as through military employment or emancipation, they may also see their support payments terminated.
Parents who have children with disabilities may see their obligations endure much longer because such children may not be able to live on their own without support. The unique circumstances of each family can change their child support plans and this post is only offered as information to its readers.