Termination of Child Support

4/29/2020

young adults

Most states terminate child support obligations when a child reaches age of majority or graduates from high school. Other states extend child support payments until the child turns 21 or even longer for adult children enrolled in a post-secondary institution or for adult children with disabilities.

Age of Majority

"Age of majority" is the legal age established under state law at which an individual is no longer a minor and, as an adult, has the right and responsibility to make certain legal choices. It is also the most common trigger for terminating child support payments. In most states, the age of majority is 18; however, it is commonly extended for youth still in high school.

College Support Beyond Age of Majority

Many states have statutory or caselaw allowing for an order of college support, either by court order or by voluntary agreement of all parties. College support may be in addition to child support, part of child support or a separate order after regular child support ends. In all states, parents have the option to include college education in their child support agreement.

Exception for Adult Children with Disabilities

In cases where a child is mentally or physically disabled and unable to support himself/herself at the age of majority, most states require parents to support their adult disabled children. Courts generally define "disability" in economic terms as the inability to adequately care for oneself by earning a living. States differ as to whether support for an adult disabled child is determined by the state's child support guidelines or by the needs of the child as balanced by the parents' ability to provide support.

Below is a chart detailing how states deal with the termination of child support. For an even deeper look at legislative action in this area, visit NCSL's Child Support and Family Law Legislation Database and search under the "Guidelines" topic.

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State

Termination of Support – Age of Majority

Termination of Support – College Support Beyond Age of Majority

Termination of Support – Exception for Adult Children with Disabilities

Alabama

Ala. Code § 26-1-1
19 years of age; child support ceases at the age of majority.

Ex parte Christopher (Ala. Oct. 4, 2013).
No duty to provide college support.

Alabama law allows post-minority support to be paid in the case of handicapped children. The Title IV-D Agency does not assist in collecting post-minority support.

Alaska

Alaska Stat. §25.20.010, §25.24.140(a)(3), §25.24.170(a)
18 years of age; child support ceases at age of majority unless the child is enrolled in high school and living in the home of a parent, guardian, or designee of the parent or guardian.

H.P.A. v. S.C.A., 704 P.2d 205 (Alaska 1985).
Courts may not require either parent to pay for post-majority college support.

Limited provisions for disabled children and other allowances as stated in the court order

Arizona

Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 25-320(F), § 25-501(A)
18 years of age; if a child reaches the age of majority while the child is attending high school or a certified high school equivalency program, support shall continue to be provided during the period in which the child is actually attending high school or the equivalency program but only until the child reaches age 19.

Solomon v. Findley, 167 Ariz. 409, 808 P.2d 294 (1991).
No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement; courts will enforce contracts to provide such support.

Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §25-320(E)
The court may order support to continue past the age of majority if all of the following are true:
1. The court has considered the factors prescribed in subsection D of this section.
2. The child has severe mental or physical disabilities as demonstrated by the fact that the child is unable to live independently and be self-supporting.
3. The child's disability began before the child reached the age of majority.

Arkansas

Ark. Code Ann. §9-14-237
18 years of age; child support ceases at age of majority unless the child is still attending high school. If the child is still attending high school, upon the child's high school graduation or the end of the school year after the child reaches 19 years of age, whichever is earlier.

Towery v. Towery, 285 Ark. 113, 685 S.W.2d 155 (1985).
No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement. Once child reaches majority, the legal duty of the parents to provide support ends.

Ark. Code Ann. §9-12-312(a)(6)(B)
The court may also provide for the continuation of support [past 18] for an individual with a disability which affects the ability of the individual to live independently from the custodial parent.

California

Cal.Fam.Code § 3901
18 years of age except an unmarried child who has attained the age of 18 years, is a full-time high school student, and who is not self-supporting, is considered a minor until the time the child completes the 12th grade or attains the age of 19 years, whichever occurs first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Cal. Fam. Code §3910
The father and mother have an equal responsibility to maintain, to the extent of their ability, a child of whatever age who is incapacitated from earning a living and without sufficient means.

Colorado

Colo. Rev. Stat. §14-10-115 (13) for orders entered after July 1, 1997; Colo. Rev. Stat. §14-10-115 (15) for orders entered prior to July 1, 1997
19 years of age unless otherwise emancipated. Emancipation occurs and child support terminates without either party filing a motion when the last or only child turns 19 unless, the child is still in high school or an equivalent program, support continues until the end of the month following graduation. A child who ceases to attend high school prior to graduation and later reenrolls is entitled to support upon reenrollment and until the end of the month following graduation, but not beyond age 21.

See In re marriage of Robb, 934 P.2d 927 (Col. Ct. App. 1997). After July 1, 1997, Colo. Rev. Stat. §14-10 115(1.6) provides the court may not so order, unless certain conditions exist.
For orders entered prior to July 1, 1997, if the court finds that it is appropriate for the parents to contribute to the costs of a program of postsecondary education, then the court shall terminate child support and enter an order requiring both parents to contribute to the education expenses of the child. The court may not issue orders for both child support and postsecondary education to be paid at the same time.

Colo. Rev. Stat. §14-10-115(13)(a)(2)
Support may continue after the last or only child attains age 19 if the child is physically or mentally disabled.

Connecticut

Conn. Gen. Stat. §1-1d; Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46b-84
18 years of age; child support ceases upon the age of majority unless the child who has attained the age of 18 and is a full-time high school student, then the parents shall maintain the child according to their respective abilities if the child is in need of maintenance until such child completes 12th grad or attains the age of 19, whichever occurs first.

Conn. Gen. Stat. §46b-56c
On motion or petition of a parent, the court may enter an educational support order, at the time of a decree of dissolution, separation or annulment, with respect to the postsecondary education of a child through the age of 23. No order may be ordered at a subsequent date unless the decree explicitly provides for it.

Conn. Gen. Stat. §46b-84(c)
The court may make appropriate orders of support of any child with intellectual disability, as defined in section 1-1g, or a mental disability or physical disability, as defined in subdivision (15) of section 46a-51, who resides with a parent and is principally dependent upon such parent for maintenance until such child attains the age of twenty-one.

Delaware

Del. Code Ann. tit. 13, §501(a)(b)(c)(d)
18 years of age, extends past majority if child is in high school and is likely to graduate or reaches of age of 19, whichever occurs first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

N/A

District of Columbia

D.C. Code Ann. §46-101; Nelson v Nelson, 548 A.2d 109, 111 (D.C. 1988)
Notwithstanding any rule of common or other law to the contrary in effect on July 22, 1976, the age of majority in the District of Columbia shall be 18 years of age, except that this chapter shall not affect any common-law or statutory right to child support.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support.

Nelson v Nelson, 548 A.2d 109, 111 (D.C. 1988)
Support can be paid beyond the age of majority if the child is mentally or physically disabled.

Florida

Fla. Stat. §61.14(9); §743.07
18 years of age, or beyond if the person is dependent in fact, is between the ages of 18 and 19, and is still in high school, performing in good faith with a reasonable expectation of graduation before the age of 19.

Slaton v. Slaton, 428 So.2d 347 (Fla. DCA 1983).
No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement. Courts will compel postsecondary support upon a finding of actual "dependency," but attendance at college does not necessarily render a child dependent.

Fla. Stat. §743.07(2)
This section shall not prohibit any court of competent jurisdiction from requiring support for a dependent person beyond the age of 18 years when such dependency is because of a mental or physical incapacity which began prior to such person reaching majority.

Georgia

Ga. Code §39-1-1; §19-6-15(e)
18 years of age. Support order entered after 7/1/92 may provide for the extension of child support to age 20, if the child is still in high school.

 

If specified in an order.

Ga. Code §19-7-2; Code, §§ 74-104, 74-105. Crane v. Crane, 1969, 225 Ga. 605, 170 S.E.2d 392.

It is the joint and several duty of each parent to provide for the maintenance, protection, and education of his or her child until the child reaches the age of majority… except to the extent that the duty of the parents is otherwise or further defined by court order.” Other examples in private orders might include extraordinary medical needs, handicapped, etc. Statutes providing that father's obligation for maintenance, protection and education of his child ceases when child becomes 21 years of age and not excepting children of majority age who are mentally ill bar right of adult child to recover support from his father beyond age of 21.  

Guam

19 Guam Code Ann. §5102(c)
18 years of age.

By agreement of the parents to extend the obligation beyond age 18.

19 Guam Code §4105.1
Payments for disabled children and for education. If a child residing on Guam is disabled before the age of eighteen (18), the court may, at any time before the child reaches the age of twenty-one (21) years, find that both parents (or the surviving parent if one is deceased) have a mutual obligation to support the child beyond the age of majority, and based upon such findings, order either or both of the parents to pay continuing child support for the benefit of such child directly to the child or his guardian, as is appropriate. Such support may be modified in the same manner as child support may be terminated if no longer needed, shall continue for as long as the child is disabled and requires support, and shall be treated as child support for purposes of this Title…

Hawaii

Hawaii Rev. Stat. §577-1; Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 576E-14; Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 584-18
18 years of age; child support ceases upon age 19 unless proof is showingn that child is presently enrolled as a full-time student in school or has been accepted into and plans to attend as a full-time student for the next semester a post-high school university, college or vocational school.

 

Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 576E-14; Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 584-18

In those cases where child support payments are to continue due to the adult child's pursuance of education, the agency, at least three months prior to the adult child's nineteenth birthday, shall send notice by regular mail to the adult child and the custodial parent that prospective child support will be suspended unless proof is provided by the custodial parent or adult child to the child support enforcement agency, prior to the child's nineteenth birthday, that the child is presently enrolled as a full-time student in school or has been accepted into and plans to attend as a full-time student for the next semester a post-high school university, college or vocational school. (a) The court shall have continuing jurisdiction to modify or revoke a judgment or order: (1) For future education and support;

Haw. Rev. Stat. §580-47(a)
Provision may be made … for the support, maintenance, and education of an incompetent adult child whether or not the petition is made before or after the child has attained the age of majority.

Idaho

Idaho Code §32-706
18 years of age; May continue until child discontinues their high school education or reaches age 19, whichever occurs first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an independent agreement.

Idaho Code §32-706
The court must take into account the physical and emotional condition and the needs of the child until the child is 18 years of age.

Illinois

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 755, §5/11-1; Ill Rev. Stat. ch. 750 §5/505
18 years of age, or 19 if the child is still attending high school.

 

IL ST CH 750 § 5/513
The court may make provisions for the education expenses of the children of the marriage, whether of minor or majority age, until the age of 25.

IL ST CH 750 § 5/513.5

The court may award sums of money out of the property and income of either or both parties or the estate of a deceased parent, as equity may require, for the support of a child of the parties who has attained majority when the child is mentally or physically disabled and not otherwise emancipated.

Indiana

Ind. Code §31-16-6-6
19 years of age, unless a child is emancipated at a younger age. If the child is enrolled full-time in a secondary school, child support continues until the child’s graduation.

Ind. Code § 31-16-6-6(c); Ind. Code § 31-16-6-2

If ordered before July 1, 2012, educational needs support is possible until age 21. If ordered after June 30, 2012, educational needs support is possible until age 19. Child support order may include sums for the child's education at institutions of higher learning, where appropriate.

Ind. Code §31-16-6-6(a)(2)
If a child is incapacitated, child support continues during the incapacity or until further order of the court.

Iowa

Iowa Code §599.1; Iowa Code §252A.3(2)
18 years of age.  May extend to 19 if child is pursuing completion of high school or the equivalent.

 

Iowa Code § 598.1(8); Iowa Code §598.1(9); Iowa Code §598.21f

“Postsecondary education subsidy" means an obligation which may include support for a child who is between the ages of 18 and 22 who is regularly attending an accredited school or is, in good faith, a full-time student in college or has been accepted for admission to college for the next term. The court may order a postsecondary education subsidy if good cause is showingn.

Iowa Code §252A.3(3)
The parents are severally liable for the support of a dependent child eighteen years of age or older, whenever such child is unable to maintain the child's self and is likely to become a public charge.

Kansas

Kan. Stat. Ann. §38-101; Kan. Stat. Ann. §23-3001
18 years of age; 16 years if married; child support ceases at age 18 unless the child reaches 18 before completing the child's high school education, but no later than age 19.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of a written agreement.

Kan. Stat. Ann. §23-3001
Support shall terminate at 18 years of age unless parents agree, by written agreement, to pay support beyond 18.

Kentucky

Ky. Rev. Stat. §403.213(3)
18 years of age, 19 if attending high school.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Ky. Rev. Stat. §405.020(2)
The father and mother shall have the joint custody, care, and support of their children who have reached the age of 18 and who are wholly dependent because of permanent physical or mental disability.

Louisiana

La. Civil Code Ann. art. 29; La. Stat. Ann. § 9:315.22
18 years of age; may continue if the child is a full-time student in good-standing enrolled in secondary school or its equivalent, has not reached age 19, and is dependent upon either parent.

 

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

La. Rev. Stat. § 9:315.22
D. An award of child support continues with respect to any child who has a developmental disability, as defined in R.S. 28:451.2, until he attains the age of twenty-two, as long as the child is a full-time student in a secondary school.  The primary domiciliary parent or legal guardian is the proper party to enforce an award of child support pursuant to this Subsection.
E. (1) An award of child support continues or shall be set with respect to any unmarried child who, whether institutionalized or not, is incapable of self-support and requires substantial care and personal supervision because of an intellectual or physical disability that is manifested before the child attains the age of majority. A disability under this Subsection shall not include substance abuse or addiction.

Maine

Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 19-A, §1653(12)
Eighteen years of age, unless the child is in secondary school, then 19 years of age, graduation, withdrawal or expulsion from school, whichever occurs first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

N/A

Maryland

MD GEN PROVIS § 1-401
18 years of age. If child is enrolled in secondary school, child has right to receive support until age 19 or graduation, whichever comes first.

Md. Family Law Code Ann. § 12-202
The Maryland child support guidelines provide that in determining whether the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case, the court may consider the terms of any existing separating or property settlement agreement or court order, including any provisions for payment of college educational expenses.

Md. Fam. Law Code Ann. § 13-101(b)(2); Md. Fam. Law Code Ann. § 13-102(b)

(b) Destitute adult child. -- "Destitute adult child" means an adult child who:
(1) has no means of subsistence; and
(2) cannot be self-supporting, due to mental or physical infirmity.

(b) Duty to support destitute adult child. -- If a destitute adult child is in this State and has a parent who has or is able to earn sufficient means, the parent may not neglect or refuse to provide the destitute adult child with food, shelter, care, and clothing.

Massachusetts

Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 4, §7(48); Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 209, §37
Eighteen years of age. May extend to 21 if the child is living with the parent and is enrolled in an educational program.

Mass. Gen. Laws. Ch. 208, § 28; See Doe v. Roe, 585 N.E.2d 340 (1992)

A court, in its discretion, may order support up to age 23 if a child is domiciled with a parent and principally dependent on that parent due to the child's enrollment in an education program, excluding educational costs beyond an undergraduate degree.

See Fienberg v. Diamant, 378 Mass. 131, 389 N.E.2d 998 (1979); See Vaida v. Vaida, 86 Mass.App.Ct. 601 (2014)

A court may order support for an adult child who is mentally or physically disabled. If adult child with disability reaches the age of 23, he/she no longer meets the statutory requirements for post-minority child support that allow post-minority child support up to age 23.

Michigan

Mich. Comp. Laws §722.52; §552.605b
Eighteen, but may order until 19 1/2 for completion of high school, or beyond 19 1/2 by agreement of the parties.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Mich. Comp. Laws §722.52
Beyond 19 1/2 by agreement of the parties.

Minnesota

Minn. Stat. §518A.26, subd.5
Eighteen years of age, or until age 20 if the child is still attending secondary school, whichever occurs later, or an individual who is incapable of self-support by reason of disability.

Minn. Stat. § 518.551 subd. 5d
Support can extend beyond this date if specifically addressed in the order and if parties had agreed to an educational trust fund for cost of post-secondary education.

Minn. Stat. § 518A.26 (5)
“’Child’ means an individual under 18 years of age, an individual under age 20 who is still attending secondary school, or an individual who, by reason of physical or mental condition, is incapable of self-support.”

Mississippi

Miss. Code Ann. §93-11-65(8)(a)
21 years of age, unless child marries or joins military; child support ceases upon the age of majority.

Stokes v. Martin, 596 So.2d 879 (Miss. 1992).
If the parties agree, support may continue beyond the age of majority. Since the age of majority is 21, support for college expenses may be ordered up to that age.

Miss. Code Ann. §93-11-65(8)(a); Hays v. Alexander, 114 So.3d 704 (Miss. 2013).

If the parties agree, support may continue beyond the age of majority and some courts may order this if the child is disabled.

Missouri

Mo. Rev. Stat. §452.340
Eighteen years of age, or until graduation from secondary school or age 21, whichever occurs first.

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 452.340(5)
If the child is enrolled in an institution of higher education or vocational school full-time,the parental support obligation shall continue until the child completes his education or until the child reaches the age of 21, whichever occurs first.

Mo. Rev. Stat. §452.340
If the child is physically or mentally incapacitated from supporting himself and insolvent and unmarried, the court may extend the parental support obligation past the child's eighteenth birthday.

Montana

Mont. Code Ann. §40-4-208(5)§40-5-201(2)
18 years of age or upon graduation from high school, whichever is later, but no later than 19, unless the child has a disability that causes financial dependency.

 

No duty to provide college support.

Mont. Code Ann. §40-4-208(6)Mont. Code Ann. §40-5-201(2)
Child is defined as a person who is mentally or physically incapacitated, if the incapacity began prior to the person's 18th birthday.
Provisions for the support of a child may not be terminated based solely on age if the child has a disability that causes the child to be financially dependent on custodial parent.
The obligation to pay child support for the individual with a disability continues until the court finds that the individual is no longer disabled or is no longer financially dependent on the custodial parent if:
(i) the decree ordering provisions for the support of a child is issued on or after July 1, 2019; or
(ii) the decree ordering provisions for the support of a child is already in effect on July 1, 2019, and has not been terminated.

Nebraska

Neb. Rev. Stat. §43-2101§42-371.01
Nineteen years of age, emancipation, or upon marriage, whichever occurs first.

 

Zetterman v. Zetterman, 245 Neb. 255, 512 N.W.2d 622 (1994).
A district court in a dissolution action may not order child support beyond the age of the majority of a child over the objection of any parent absent a previous agreement between the parents. In this case, the parents' prior agreement was enforced.

Neb. Rev. Stat. §43-2101
Only if parties agreed and it's included in the support order, otherwise age of majority is 19.

Nevada

Nev. Rev. Stat. §129.010Nev. Rev. Stat. §425.300
Age of majority is 18; or up to a maximum age of 19, if a student is enrolled in, but has not yet completed high school.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Nev. Rev. Stat. §125B.110
A parent shall support beyond the age of majority his or her child with a handicap until the child is no longer handicapped or until the child becomes self-supporting. The handicap of the child must have occurred before the age of majority for this duty to apply.

New Hampshire

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §461-A:14(IV)
Until age 18 or completes high school, whichever is later; or if the child becomes married, or a member of the armed services, or is emancipated pursuant to an order of emancipation

 

N.H. Rev. Stat. § 461-A:21
Agreement on College Expenses. – Parents may agree to contribute to their child's college expenses or other educational expenses beyond the completion of high school as part of a stipulated decree, signed by both parents and approved by the court. The agreed-on contribution may be made by one or both parents. The agreement may provide for contributions to an account to save for college, for the use of an asset, or for payment of educational expenses as incurred. Any such agreement shall specify the amount of the contribution, a percentage, or a formula to determine the amount of the contribution.

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §461-A:14(IV)
The court may initiate or continue child support beyond the age of 18 for children with disabilities, provided that the order does not continue support after the child reaches age 21.

New Jersey

N.J. Stat. Ann. 2A:17-56.67N.J. Rev. Stat. Ann. §2A:34-23; See NJ Child Support Guidlines link Appendix IX-A, 24 & 25.
The age of majority is 19 years old, unless the child is still attending high school or college or has a mental or physical disability, not to extend beyond age 23.

N.J. Stat. Ann. §2A:17-56.67
Child support will terminate when the child reaches age 19 unless he or she is a student in a post-secondary education program and is enrolled in the number of hours or courses the school considers to be full-time attendance. In that case, child support may be extended

N.J. Stat. Ann. 2A:17-56.67
Child support will terminate at age 19 unless the child has a physical or mental disability, as determined by a federal or state government agency, that existed prior to the child reaching the age of 19 and requires continued child support. In this case, custodial parents may submit a written request to continue support beyond 19 years of age.

New Mexico

N.M. Stat. Ann. §40-4-7(B)(3)(b)
Eighteen years of age, unless still in high school, then up to 19 years of age.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

N.M. Stat. §40-4-7(C)
The court may order and enforce the payment of support for the maintenance and education after high school of emancipated children of the marriage pursuant to a written agreement between the parties.

New York

N.Y. Family Court §413(1)a
18 years of age; child support may continue until the child reaches 21 years of age.

N.Y. Dom. Rel. Law § 240(1-b)(c )(7); See Setford v. Cavanaugh, 175 A.D.2d 665, 572 N.Y.S.2d 591 (1991).

The court may award educational expenses, such as for college or private school or for special enriched education. A parent may not, however, be directed to pay child support and/or contribute toward college education expenses for a child who is 21 years of age or older absent express agreement to do so.

N.Y. Family Court §415; N.Y. Family Court §413(1)a

Under very limited circumstances if the child is handicapped or stipulated in a divorce decree. Until 21 for a mental disability.

North Carolina

N.C. Gen. Stat. §50-13.4
18 years of age. If still in primary or secondary school when child turns 18, support may continue until age 20 or graduation, whichever comes first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

N.C. Gen. Stat. §50-13.8
For the purposes of custody, the rights of a person who is mentally or physically incapable of self-support upon reaching his majority shall be the same as a minor child for so long as he remains mentally or physically incapable of self-support.

North Dakota

N.D. Cent. Code §14-09-08.2
18 years of age. May extend past 18 if still in high school. Support ends when the child graduates from high school or reaches 19 years of age.

 

N.D. Cent. Code §14-09-08.2(6); See Donarski v. Donarski, 581 N.E.2d 130 (N.D. 1998) (citing Newburgh v. Arrigo, from New Jersey); Johnson v. Johnson, 527 N.W. 2d 663 (N.D. 1995).

Allows a court to order support past the age of majority if the parties agree or the court deems it appropriate.

N.D. Cent. Code §14-09-08.2(6)
This section does not preclude the entry of an order for child support which continues after the child reaches age eighteen, if the parties agree, or if the court determines the support to be appropriate.

Ohio

Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3109.01Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3119.88Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3119.86
18 years of age, or as long as the child attends high school on a full-time basis or a court order requires the duty of support to continue, unless specified in the court order.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3119.86
Support may continue past 18 if the child is mentally or physically disabled and is incapable of supporting or maintaining himself or herself.

Oklahoma

Okla. Stat. tit. 43, §112(E)
18 years of age, or if the child is regularly attending high school, other means of high school education, or an alternative high school education program as a full-time student, the child shall be entitled to support by the parents until the child graduates or turns 20, whichever comes first.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Okla. St. Ann. tit. 43, §112.1A
Court may order support past majority, for an indefinite period of time, if the child requires substantial care and personal supervision because of a mental or physical disability and is incapable of self-support and the disability exists, or the cause of the disability is known to exist, on or before the eighteenth birthday of the child.

Oregon

Or. Rev. Stat. §109.510Or. Rev. Stat. §107.108
18 years old; may continue to age 21 if the child is unmarried and attending an educational facility such as a high school, community college, four-year college or university.

Or. Rev. Stat. § 107.108; In re Marriage of Crocker, 157 Or. App. 651, 971 P.2d 469 (1998).

Authorizes a court to order a parent to pay support for a child regularly attending post-secondary education to age 21.

Or. Rev. Stat. § 109.010
Parents have a duty to support their children who are poor and unable to work to support themselves.

Pennsylvania

Pa. Cons. Stat. tit. 23, §4321(2)
18 years of age or high school graduation from high school, whichever occurs later, unless emancipated at an earlier age.

See Curtis v. Kline, 542 Pa. 249, 666 A.2d 265 (1995).

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement. Contractually based agreements for post-secondary educational support contained in marital separation agreements are enforceable.

Pa. Cons. Stat. tit. 23, §4321(3)
Parents may be liable for the support of their children who are up to 18 years of age or older and have a mental or physical condition that prevent the child from being self-supporting.

Puerto Rico

31 L.P.R.A. §97131 L.P.R.A. § 91131 L.P.R.A. §93131 L.P.R.A. §912 & §951.
21 years of age. A minor may be emancipated prior to reaching the age of majority by marriage, judicial decree (based on orphan or self-support status), or parental consent, if child is beyond 18 years old.

Support beyond the age of majority could be ordered only by the court if the child is a full-time student, maintains good academic progress and can demonstrate economic needs to justify continuation of support.

N/A

Rhode Island

R.I. Gen. Laws §15-5-16.2(b)
Eighteen years of age, unless the child is still in high school, then for 90 days following graduation but in no case past the child's 19th birthday.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

R.I. Gen. Laws §15-5-16.2(b)
Court may order support past majority, if the child has a severe physical or mental impairment and is still living with or under the care of a parent.

South Carolina

S.C. Code Ann. §63-3-530(17)
18 years of age or until married, self-supporting or otherwise emancipated. Possibly past 18 if the child is enrolled and still attending high school, not to exceed high school graduation or the end of the school year after the child reaches 19, whichever is later.

 

Risinger v. Risinger, 273 S.C. 36, 253 S.E.2d 652 (1979); West v. West, 309 S.C. 28, 419 S.E.2d 804 (Ct. App. 1992).
Court may order college support. (jurisdiction of the family court is permitted in cases of children over 18 years of age where exceptional circumstances warrant it; family court judge may require a parent to contribute that amount of money necessary to enable a child over 18 to attend high school and four years of college, where there is evidence that: (1) the characteristics of the child indicate that he or she will benefit from college; (2) the child demonstrates the ability to do well, or at least make satisfactory grades; (3) the child cannot otherwise go to school; and (4) the parent has the financial ability to help pay for such an education).

S.C. Code Ann. §63-3-530(17)
The Court has the discretion to provide for child support past the age of 18 when there are physical or mental disabilities of the child or other exceptional circumstances that warrant the continuation of child support beyond age 18 for as long as the physical or mental disabilities or exceptional circumstances continue.

South Dakota

S.D. Codified Laws Ann. §25-5-18.1
18 or until 19 years of age if full-time student in a secondary school.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

S.D. Codified Laws Ann. 25-7-9
If child is still being supported by one parent, there cannot be compensation by other parent unless there is an agreement. The necessary health and special needs of the child will be considered in whether to deviate from the guidelines.

Tennessee

Tenn. Code Ann. §34-1-102
18 years of age, unless child is still in high school; then in such cases emancipation occurs when child graduates from high school or when class child is in when they reach 18 graduates.

See also Nash v. Mulle, 846 S.W.2d 803 (Tenn. 1993)(the extent to which a trust fund established during the child's minority for her later college education is permitted).
No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Tenn. Code Ann. § 36-5-101(k)
May continue to 21 years of age if handicapped or disabled, unless severely disabled and living under the care of a parent and it is in the best interest of the child for support to continue.

Texas

Tex. Family Code Ann. §101.003Tex. Family Code Ann. §154.001
Support obligation ends at 18 years of age, marriage or until graduation from high school, whichever occurs later.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Tex. Family Code Ann. §154.001
For an indefinite period if the child is disabled.

Utah

Utah Code Ann. §78B-12-219
Eighteen years of age, upon marriage, emancipation or until normal and expected graduation from high school, whichever occurs later. Support ends if the child becomes a member of the armed forces.

Utah Code Ann. § 15-2-1
In divorce actions, courts may order support to age 21.

Utah Code Ann. §78B-12-102
Defines "child," for purposes of child support, as a son or daughter who is incapacitated from earning a living, and, if able to provide financial resources to the family, is not able to support self by own means.

Vermont

Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 1, §173Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 15, §201
18 years of age; 21 years of age if child is a regularly attending student of a school, college, or university, or vocational or technical training.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

Only if stipulated by the parties.

Virgin Islands

16 V.I.C. Sec 341(g)
Eighteen years of age. Support may be continued up to age 22 years of age if the child is enrolled and attending an accredited college or university on a full-time basis, pursuing a high school diploma or enrolled in a vocational program.

16 V.I.C. Sec 341(g)
Support may be continued up to age 22 years of age, if the child has been accepted to or is enrolled and attending an accredited college or university on a full-time basis, pursuing a high school diploma or enrolled in a vocational program.

16 V.I.C. Sec 341(g)
Support may be ordered for a child of any age who is dependent because of a physical or mental disability.

Virginia

Va. Code §16.1-228Va. Code § 20-60.3
18 years of age. May continue until the child turns 19 or graduations from high school, whichever occurs first.

Va. Code § 20-124.2
The court may confirm a stipulation or agreement of the parties which extends a support obligation beyond when it would otherwise terminate as provided by law.

Va. Code § 20-60.3(5); Va. Code Ann. 20-124.2 (C)

May continue for a child over the age of 18 who is (a) severely and permanently mentally or physically disabled, (b) unable to live independently and support himself, and (c) residing in the home of the parent seeking or receiving child support.

Washington

Wash. Rev. Code §26.28.010
18 years of age; may extend child support if a child is still in high school under certain circumstances.

Wash. Rev. Code § 26.19.090
The court may, in its discretion and according to enumerated factors, award college support.

Wash. Rev. Code § 26.19.090
Court may extend support in special cases or order post-secondary support.

West Virginia

W. Va. Code §48-11-103
18 years of age. May continue past age 18 if the child is unmarried, residing with a parent and a full-time student in a secondary education or vocational program making substantial progress towards a diploma.

No duty of college support imposed.

W. Va. Code §48-11-103
May continue past 18 if child is handicapped or disabled.

Wisconsin

Wis. Stat. §54.01(20); Wis. ST 767.511
18 years of age, or up to 19 if the child is pursuing an accredited course of instruction leading to the acquisition of a high school diploma or its equivalent.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

N/A

Wyoming

Wyo. Stat. §14-1-101§14-2-204
18 years of age. May be extended to age 20 if the child is attending high school or an equivalent program full-time.

No statute or case law holding parents to a duty to college support in the absence of an agreement.

 

Wyo. Stat. §14-2-204(a)(i)
A parent's legal obligation for support of children continues past the age of majority when the child is mentally or physically disabled and incapable of self-support.