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dammitman28

Child Support Through College?

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Here's my situation:

I've been paying child support on 2 children since my divorce.  I currently pay $600 a month.  My oldest son is now 20 and will be 21 in June.  However, my paycheck withholding never changed and according to every Arkansas state law I've been able to find, child support stops when the child turns 18 or is out of high school, whichever comes later (but he graduated at 17).  I've been in touch with the clearinghouse here and they informed me I'd have to get a lawyer to change the order.  Well, I decided to let it go for a few months to help out while my son had started college.  He actually lived with me for nearly a year after he turned 18 and I still paid on him.  We had a falling out over his unwillingness to get a summer job while out of school and he decided to move back in with his mom.  His mom and I had a confrontation over the child support thing and she disagreed saying I was obligated to pay until he's 19.  To shorten the story, she started giving me nearly half of the child support back after he turned 19, so I haven't made a big fuss over the $600 still being taken out.

 

Well, now she hasn't been paying it back since November and it's causing some problems with my current wife and I.  I confront her and I get a text about how she has an appointment with a case worker in February and this case worker has told her that since the oldest still lives at home, is going to college on a scholarship/Pell grants etc., that I may be obligated to pay until he's 21, so they're going to look into that and in the meantime she's not paying anything back.  What kind of crap is this?  There's nothing in our decree about paying through his college years, there's no Arkansas guideline I've been able to find on the state's child support webpage...where is this "case worker" getting this idea?  The kid is even working part time while he's going to school, I'm still giving him medical coverage and somehow I'm still responsible to pay child support on him?  This sounds like a load of crap to me.

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You say child support is being taken out for two kids, but your message only ever mentions one of them.  Is the other child still a minor?  I can't speak to Arkansas law in particular, but in many if not most states, when one of several children "ages out", it's not a foregone conclusion that the child support will be reduced for the remaining child, so you may still owe $600 per month.  A local family law attorney can clue you in to how Arkansas law applies to your particular circumstances.

 

Furthermore, even if your child support obligation is reduced in accordance with Arkansas law, it may be necessary to get a court order to make the reduction official so that your withholding can be modified.  Again, your attorney is the person you need to be talking to.

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Yes the other child is still 12 years old.  I haven't talked to a lawyer about changing the order because she has been giving nearly half of the support back pretty faithfully until the past 3 or 4 months, now she comes up with this crazy scenario out of nowhere.  So I am now seeking out a lawyer, using the link on this site as a matter of fact, to go ahead and have this matter settled.  I was just curious if there was someone out there who knew something about an Arkansas stipulation with child support that I wasn't aware of before I make a big hoopla out of something that is a losing battle for me.

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