Child support finances a minor child’s growing needs. But divorcing parents can file for payment termination when the child turns 18, graduates from high school, remarries, joins the military or dies.
However, Texas law has exceptions to the rule that recognize distinct family structures involving an adult disabled child. The disability warrants indefinite child support, extending beyond 18 or through adulthood.
Learning the factors involved in this continued child support can guide parents in navigating their unique circumstances.
Indefinite child support for an adult disabled child
The adult child’s disability may include a range of physical, mental or developmental illnesses or impairments. The court may order support for an indeterminate period from either or both parents if:
- The child is incapable of self-support and demands substantial care and personal supervision
- The disability or its cause exists on or before the child’s 18th birthday
The judge thoroughly evaluates these factors before their final decision. They often consider potential costs in caring for an adult disabled child, such as hospitalizations, therapies, educational programs and other living expenses. The judge may also look at each parent’s economic status to determine how they will fund their child’s disability.
Definite love for an adult disabled child
Parental love must remain constant, regardless of the adult child’s special needs. They can show this by speaking with their legal counsel to solidify child support arrangements. They can also help in establishing other key details ordered by the court, such as modes of payment or receiving parties if there are other individuals with custodial or guardianship rights. Doing so can help stabilize and protect the child’s welfare and future.