Your child is turning 18 in a few more weeks and you must be wondering if you can claim child support after 18. Child support does end at the age of 18 and there are a few things that may come to mind when you are thinking of this. For instance, have they been employed? Do you still need financial provisions for your child? These questions are covered within this article, so let’s get to it.
Eligibility For Child Support After 18
A child support assessment is made to determine the amount a parent should pay or receive. A parent can apply for an extended assessment for their eligible child when they are 17. You have to first provide evidence that you are the legal parent of the child. This can be confirmed by the following:
- You’re married to your partner when the child was born to them
- Your name is present on the child’s birth certificate
- Your name is present in adoption papers as a parent
- You’re male and lived under the same roof any time between 22-40 weeks with the child (roughly 4-10 months)
- You’re a parent under the Family Law Act 1975
- There is a clear statement from the court that recognises you as the child’s parent
Another way to confirm whether you are the legal parent of a child is when you have a legal document that backs up your eligibility.
A statutory declaration made by you or the other parent stating you’re the child’s parent can be a great help as well. Non-parent carers may also back up the eligibility if they have stated that one or both names of the parents are in the child’s certificate.
Remember, investigation can still be conducted if there are any loopholes or conflicting evidence about being a legal parent in these cases.
Non-Parent Carers Who Want Child Support After 18
What if you are not an eligible parent who wants child support after 18? Listed below are things to consider when doing so:
- Apply for child support assessment
- Make a child support agreement
- Provide evidence that you care for the child for at least 128 nights a year
- That you aren’t the partner of either of the child’s parents
- You may apply for child support after 18 from the child’s parents
- You are a resident of Australia
An eligible non-parent carer can apply for child support assessment covered by the parents of the child given that they have at least shared care of the child. A non-parent carer cannot be an eligible carer if they are not the legal guardian of the child or the child’s parent or legal guardian did not consent to the care of the non-eligible carer.
An investigation by The Department of Human Services will be deemed necessary if the applicant satisfies the requirements to be an eligible carer for the child.
Adult Child Maintenance
There are several things worth noting when talking about adult child maintenance. Is the child completing their secondary or tertiary education? Do they have comorbidities, serious illnesses, and/or are they mentally and physically disabled? If this is the case, then the child may get financial support from a parent.
Given that both parents consent to the maintenance, this can be put into writing and be submitted to the Court. This then will turn into an adult child maintenance court order. The court may decide if otherwise.
To reiterate, the parent can apply for child support after 18 when the child is still 17. However, the child may also assist in their own support if they consider working part-time. The court will take study commitments, disabilities/illnesses, and other related factors into account if it hinders them from leading a decent lifestyle.
A good standard of living is what everyone deserves. The bare minimum should be prevented when dealing with these kinds of cases, especially in child support after 18. After all, child support generally means that both parents must do their best in supporting their child. The necessary expenses may include – but are not limited to:
- Basic household supplies
- Utilities and bills
- Daily meals
- Academic expenses
- Medical expenses
All of the necessary expenses above will depend on the parent’s income and financial position. If both parties cannot agree on the splitting of payments needed, the court will decide on how much needs to be covered for the child’s expenses.
Agreements Between Parents On Child Support After 18
Given that you and the other party reach a mutual agreement on covering child support, you may then file an agreement to the court which is made into a consent order. However, not all partners reach a compromise on dates and schedules of payments.
Domestic violence and other disputes may be a hindrance to reaching an agreement. In this case, you can apply to the court for a decision. The decision made by the court in the form of a Court Order will be legally binding.
Payments may be put to a stop when the adult child finishes their education. The court may not make an order for a second degree of qualification given that the adult child prefers to resume their studies. When a particular time frame has ended in their education, payments may also be stopped.
It is the duty of a parent to inform the paying party if there are any updates on the child’s illnesses and disabilities. The court will then stop the order once the child is healthy and free from illnesses.
Importance Of Seeking Legal Advice
Seeking child support after 18 can be a strenuous task in the absence of proper legal advice. We believe that reaching amicable results is what you deserve as a parent. Furthermore, a hassle-free legal experience is also needed to ensure your child does not face any stress or anxiety.
At JB Solicitors, our team of family lawyers is equipped with the right experience to handle such stressful cases. We offer fixed-fee pricing to save you from those complicated procedures by providing you with a clear sense of all legal costs.
Connect with JB Solicitors today