Child support often raises questions for parents. Here are a few of the most common questions we encounter.

Will I have to continue paying support after my child reaches 18?

Typically, once your child reaches the age or 18 or graduates high school, whichever occurs later, child support would end.

However, the Texas Family Code also describes other situations that affect when support would end, which include:

  • When the child marries
  • If the child dies
  • If a stepparent adopts the child
  • Indefinite child support for a disabled child

It is important to understand that just because you meet one of these factors, your child support does not automatically end. Texas courts require you to submit a form requesting termination. Your attorney can assist you with submitting this request.

Can my ex-spouse deny my rights to see my child if I fail to make a support payment?

No. Child support and parenting plans are separate issues. If the court determined that visitation with the other spouse was in the child’s best interests, only a court order can change that right.

What can a spouse use child support payments to cover in Texas?

The purpose of paying to support your child is to ensure the child’s basic needs are covered. Basic needs include food, clothing and shelter. Shelter relates to housing, and therefore child support may go toward paying for rent, a mortgage and utilities. Texas also requires medical support for children. And, it may involve private health insurance or government programs for the child’s health coverage.

Payment calculations do not include support for vacations, extracurricular or college tuition. However, if you cover basic needs and there is adequate payment to cover these expenses that benefit the child, Texas laws do not restrict parents from using support in this way.

Do You Have Questions About Child Support?

Richardson Brown focuses our practice on family law and we are glad to answer your questions and protect your interests.