When Does Child Support End in IL?

If one parent is award primary custody of the child, then the other will be responsible for paying child support to provide for the child’s care and needs, from food, shelter, clothing, health, and education. However, making these payments every month for years can cause financial stress, which is why many paying parents wonder when will child support end. 

According to the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services, since a child is legally emancipated at the age of 18, a current support order is terminated when the child becomes 18 years old. However, as of June 2003, child support orders—in administrative and judicial cases—can be extended until the child graduates high school or reaches 19 years old, whichever occurs sooner. 

However, child support can be terminated before a child turns 18 years old if he/she becomes emancipated when: 

  • The child gets married 

  • The child joins the U.S. military 

  • The child moves out of the home and becomes independent 

  • The child becomes employed and no longer needs child support from his/her parents 

If a parent wishes to terminate child support because of an emancipated child, he/she must provide the actual petition for emancipation that is filed in court. In other words, just because a child gets married, joins the military, or otherwise moves out of the home does not mean he/she is automatically emancipated – there needs to be a court order. 

On the other hand, parents may agree to continue paying child support until the child graduates from college or trade school or reaches a certain age. Additionally, when it comes to children with special needs, the parents may agree to continue providing child support well into adulthood or perhaps for the rest of the child’s life, depending on the severity of the physical or mental disability. 

If you are interested in modifying or terminating child support in Chicago, contact the Law Offices of Jonathan Merel, P.C. today at (312) 487-2795 for a phone consultation. Do not hesitate to obtain award-winning and experienced legal representation! 

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