Indiana's Secondary Education Child Support Laws

By Heather Frances J.D.

An Indiana law that went into effect in July 2012 changed the age at which the noncustodial parent can stop paying child support and the deadline for the custodial parent to ask the court to award child support for college expenses. Noncustodial parents can now ask the court to let them stop paying child support when their children are 19, and custodial parents must ask the court to order payment for college expenses before their children turn 19.

Age of Emancipation

The law passed in 2012 changed the age for emancipation of a minor child from 21 to 19. Parents typically do not have a legal obligation to provide for their children after the child becomes a legal adult, so child support obligations can now end at 19 instead of 21. Even if a child is still living at home and dependent on his parents after he turns 19, the noncustodial parent can be released from his obligation to pay support.

Petition to Emancipate

It is up to the noncustodial parent to file a Petition to Emancipate with the court, which allows the court to officially terminate the parent’s support obligations. Child support obligations do not automatically terminate when the child reaches 19, so the paying parent must take steps to terminate obligations. The court can modify the child support order if only one child is eligible for emancipation while younger children still require support. If the parent is no longer supporting any other children, the court can terminate the child support order.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Previous Orders

If a noncustodial parent already agreed to pay a child’s college expenses in the divorce settlement agreement, he is still required to pay, and the 2012 law does not impact his payments. Similarly, if a court ordered the noncustodial parent to pay college expenses in the divorce decree, the 2012 law has no effect on the case.

College Expenses

The 2012 law requires children and parents to petition the court to ask for contributions to college expenses from the noncustodial parent before the child turns 19 rather than before he turns 21, which was the deadline in the old law. If college expenses were not included in the settlement agreement or the divorce decree and the parents cannot agree on a solution, either the parent or the child may ask the court to determine how the child’s college expenses should be divided. If the parents do reach agreement, they can file that agreement with the court to make it enforceable should the other parent fail to make payments as agreed.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
California Family Laws on Terminating Child Support


Related articles

Does Child Support End When the Child Graduates From High School?

Graduation from high school may or may not end your obligation to pay child support. It depends on two main factors, the statutory requirements in the state the child resides and any contractual obligations you agreed to in writing, usually during a divorce proceeding. Generally, by the time a child graduates from high school, he becomes an adult in the eyes of the law, thereby terminating your duty to pay child support. But there are many exceptions to the general rule.

Alabama Laws on Child Support & the Restart of Child Support

Child support in Alabama is usually determined in a straightforward manner. As in many other states, Alabama uses the "income shares" model to determine child support. The formula takes into account the combined gross income of both parents, percentage each parent earns and several other factors such as who pays for health insurance. Either parent can ask for the child support amount to be recalculated at any time when there is a change of circumstances. There are situations when child support is stopped and then restarted, but they are rare.

When Can Child Support Be Terminated in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, child support usually terminates when a child reaches the age of majority, which under Kentucky law, occurs when the child reaches age 18, unless he is still in high school or is handicapped. Usually, child support obligations ordered by a Kentucky court terminate automatically when the child reaches age 18 and graduates from high school. However, there are some exceptions to this general rule in which additional circumstances or court intervention must take place before a parent can legally stop paying child support.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Nevada Law on the Emancipation of a Minor Child

The age of majority, or the age at which a child legally becomes an adult, is 18 in Nevada. However, teenagers younger ...

What Is the Illinois Law on Age & Paying Child Support?

In any divorce proceeding, one of the chief concerns is ensuring that children of the marriage are secure. This means ...

Can You Get Child Support Stopped at 18 if a Child Is in Secondary School?

Most states agree that your child has the right to finish secondary school without worrying about supporting himself ...

Does Child Support Automatically Stop When a Child Turns 18 in Maryland?

Child support laws often confound parents because the finer points change from state to state and few universal, ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED