What is the process for ending child support payments once a child reaches the age of emancipation? Also, what affect will that have on arrears?
While I am not licensed to practice law in your state and cannot give you legal advice, I can give some general observations on this issue based on the jurisdiction where I practice.
Where I do practice in Pennsylvania, the obligation to pay child support ceases when the youngest minor child is emancipated (turns 18 or graduates high school, whichever is later). Once the child is nearing emancipation, the court will usually schedule a conference to confirm the emancipation and, if possible, begin the process of closing out the child support case.
If this does not happen, a parent who is paying child support can always call the support office and ask about ending the case because of emancipation.
Even when a child support case is closed, the parent who is obligated to pay support will still be responsible for any arrearages left on the account.
Pennsylvania support offices also allow a party to request an accounting of their account if it is believed that there is an error in the account.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips, so please consult a domestic litigation attorney in your jurisdiction to obtain specific advice as to the laws in your state and how they impact your potential case.