You and your spouse were proud to see your child get accepted into college. You both were eager to see the day come when they’d leave home and get to explore what they want to do in life.
Unfortunately, with them leaving the nest, you’ve both also agreed that you no longer want to do this journey together. You had been thinking about divorcing for some time, but not having a child at home makes it easier.
One of the things you should both discuss at this juncture is how you’d like to work out child support. Your child is 17 now, but they would technically lose support at 18. Should you consider a longer term of support through their college years? Can you set aside support and work out a payment plan for their college classes instead?
Florida’s child support stops at 18
For the most part, child support stops at 18 in Florida. The state does not make it an obligation for parents to pay for their children’s education after they turn 18.
That doesn’t mean that you and your ex-spouse can’t work out a different arrangement. Since Florida sees this as a moral issue, you may, too. You should both sit down and discuss if you’d like to support your child through college. If so, how do you want to do that? Would you like to work out a payment schedule for both parents for the next few years, or would you prefer to set up a tuition agreement where you and the other parent split the costs in an appropriate way?
You are able to enter into a voluntary agreement over your child’s continued support. Even though they’re going to be over 18, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they automatically have what it takes to support themselves. If you both feel that you can come up with a new support plan for your child while they’re in college, then that’s what you should do.
While you’re working on your divorce settlement, write out your agreement. That way, you can submit it to the court and have it be a binding agreement until your child graduates.