Child support obligations for disabled children

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in child support on Friday, October 19, 2018.

While it may be reasonable to expect that tensions exist between you and your ex-spouse immediately following your divorce in Jackson County, the passage of time should help ease those, especially if your ex-spouse remains compliant to any support obligations they may have (such as child support). It is well known that (in most cases) parents paying child support are no longer required to do so once a child reaches the age of majority. Yet what if you have a disabled child? Many in your situation come to us here at the Stange Law Firm concerned that once their ex-spouses’ child support obligations end, they will struggle to meet their disabled children’s needs on their own.

The hope is that your ex-spouse will understand the need to continue to offer financial support for your disabled child into adulthood. Yet if they express an unwillingness to, you should know that the law does provide a method to extend a child support obligation past the age of 18 for disabled persons. Per Section 452.340 of Missouri’s Revised Statutes, your ex-spouse may be ordered to continue to pay child support for your disabled child if the following elements exist in your case:

  • Your child’s physical or mental handicap makes them unable to support themselves
  • Your child has no realistic prospect of ever being financially solvent
  • Your child remains unmarried

The question then becomes how much longer into your disabled child’s adulthood will your ex-spouse be required to pay child support? Most extended obligations end when the child turns 21. However, if whatever other financial assistance your child receives is unable to meet their needs, the court could possibly make the obligation indefinite.

You can learn more about¬†Missouri’s child support guidelines by continuing to explore our site.

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