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Should I Modify Child Support When My Child Turns 18 & Graduates?

“Should I go back to Court and request a modification of child support when one of my children reaches eighteen and graduates from high school?”

If you have ever asked yourself this question as a divorced parent, then you should know the answer: it depends.

Take a close look at the Final Order that established your child support obligation (Uniform Support Order). What does it say about modification of child support when the eldest child graduates from high school? If the Order specifies the amount of child support that should be paid after the older child reaches eighteen and graduates from high school, there is no need to file for modification. The new amount will automatically become effective.

That being said, it is not very common for a Final Order to so state what to do when an eldest child of a family graduates high school and reaches legal maturity. Affirmatively identifying an automatic modification can be done only when the eldest child will become emancipated within three years of the Order that specifies support for all children (RSA 461-A:14, IV-a).

If you are not one of the lucky ones and your Order does not automatically adjust your child support, you should file for modification of child support — and do it as soon as possible. You may be wondering why the sense of urgency to modify your child support. The answer is simple: child support can be modified retroactively, but only to the date of service of the Motion to Amend child support (RSA 458-C:7). If you do not want to be obligated to pay child support for a child who is in college, request modification of child support as soon as that child turns eighteen or graduates from high school, whichever occurs last.

Manchester Child Support Attorneys Making Things Easy

If you need any assistance with filing or litigating your request to modify child support, do not hesitate to reach out to a Manchester family lawyer from Brennan Lenehan lacopino & Hickey. Our law office was first established in 1975, and we have been providing personalized, high-quality legal representation ever since. See how we can help you with your child support modification by calling (603) 734-5461 or by using an online contact form today.

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