Paying For College

Question: Child support was established when we divorced in 2005 but there was nothing about college in the divorce decree. I will support my daughter for college. But, does my ex have any obligations?

Answer: First let me tell you that I am not licensed in Georgia.  Since laws will vary from state to state, it is also important to seek legal advice from an attorney licensed in your state.  Every state will address college expenses differently.

In some states there is no support obligation past the age of 18 and this will include educational expenses.  However, many states will order parents to pay a part of their child’s educational expenses.  If Georgia will order parents to pay for college expenses, there are likely guidelines in place to determine each parties share.  If your divorce decree was silent on this issue you will need to Petition the court for an order on education fees when it is time for your child to attend college.  There may be a time limitation for filing this petition.  For example, Indiana requires that a Petition for education expenses be filed prior to the child attaining 21 years of age.

Check the law of your State. If an order for education expenses is ordered,  your share and that of your ex will likely be based on your incomes.  If your income is equal to your ex-wife’s then your share of educational expenses should be equal to her share.  If your income is more then your share will be more.  The court will likely also find that your child is responsible for a share of her college expenses.  If she receives grants, scholarships or loans these will count toward her share.  Again, every state addresses this issue differently so it is important to contact an attorney in your state.

Your Question Category:Rules/Procedures

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