Our Portland Family Attorney Explains Oregon’s Unique Law on Child Support for Adult Children in College

children standing outside school
Oregon child support laws allow adult children over the age of 18 to continue to qualify for support if enrolled in college or higher education. Oregon is one of only a few states with such a law, as our legislature believes it is important to address the issue of continuing education for a child who does not benefit from decisions made by an intact family. This is a great benefit to the child; however, it may also put an undue hardship on mothers and fathers, especially when parents continue to support other minor children. Portland family lawyer Ronald Allen Johnston represents parents and children in actions for continued support for adult children. Having practiced family law in Oregon for over 40 years, he prides himself on finding creative solutions to problems that arise in continued child support cases.

Qualification for Children Attending School

A child support obligation typically ends when a child reaches age 18, but Oregon allows it to continue if the following qualifications are met:

  • The adult child is not married and is 18, 19 or 20 years old.
  • The adult child attending school, college, university, GED course, vocational training or Job Corps.
  • The adult child is making satisfactory academic progress as defined by the school or program.
  • The adult child is carrying at least ½ the full course load as determined by the school or program.

Child support payments will continue though scheduled, regular breaks as long as the child plans to continue in school after the break. The parent paying support is entitled to receive copies of grades and academic progress as well as updated enrollment status.

The amount of support will be determined by the:

  • Income of both parents,
  • Needs of other minor children of the parties,
  • Health care costs for of the child enrolled in school and other minor children, and
  • Other circumstances affecting the resources and needs of the parties and children.

Paying child support for an adult child enrolled in school does not mean a parent is entirely responsible for the full costs of college. The child support will go to the adult child or directly to the school, unless the court orders otherwise for good cause shown. The adult child is entitled to participate in any litigation regarding ongoing support and must be provided notice of the proceedings. The child may have his or her own attorney, but the court will not appoint an attorney for an adult child.

Ronald Johnston represents mothers and fathers as well as children in actions for child support for adult children attending school as well as for Oregon support enforcement. It is always best to first attempt negotiation and settlement of these matters, but if the parties cannot agree, Portland custody attorney Ronald Allen Johnston is ready and able to litigate child support issues before the family court. Contact our firm today to set up a consultation to discuss your case regarding continued child support for adult children attending school.

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