Can child support be extended past my child’s 18th birthday?

Generally, child support is required until a child turns 18. However, Virginia law recognizes specific situations when child support may be extended.  

Financial Support Until A Child Turns 19 #

Eighteen is the legal age in Virginia. While your child may technically be an adult at that point, there are a few situations when an 18-year-old may still need child support. Accordingly, Virginia law may require payments to continue until a child’s 19th birthday under the following circumstances:

  • The child is still in high school full time.
  • The child is not self-supporting.
  • The child lives in the home of the parent who is receiving child support payments.

Financial Support After a Child Turns 19 #

Virginia law allows child support payments to continue after a child’s 19th birthday under the following circumstances:

  • The person is severely and permanently mentally or physically disabled and was severely and permanently mentally or physically disabled while previously eligible for child support.
  • The person is unable to be self-supporting or to live independently.
  • The person is living in the home of the other parent who is currently receiving or who is seeking child support payments.

Parents may also enter a voluntary agreement for child support payments after a child turns 19 years old, and a Virginia court will typically approve and enforce these types of voluntary agreements. Additionally, parents may enter agreements about paying for college expenses or supporting a child in college, but these are not considered child support issues.