The nice guy finishes last rule in Child Support

Maybe it’s the inherent goodness in someone or a case of the guilties, but it is not uncommon  for a payor of child support(usually a man) to want to continue child support payments until the child is 21 or 25, as long as the child stays in school. THIS IS A BAD IDEA.  In California, pursuant to Family Code § 3901 , child support normally terminates when the child turns 18 or is a full-time high school student who is not yet 19.  However, if a payor wants to continue paying support for that child as the child goes to college and/or graduate school that is a nice gesture–BUT SHOULD BE DONE INFORMALLY , AND  NOT PURSUANT TO A COURT ORDER. Family Code §3587 provides that the parties may stipulate to an order to pay child support for a child beyond the age of termination and (now the kicker) the court can make “an order to effecuate the agreement“. Arguably, this provision allows the Court to continue to exercise its statutory power to order  Child Support pursuant to The California Child Support Guidelines.  So the court can, if the facts were right, increase the  agreed amount of child support, to be in accordance with the California Child Support guidelines. Although the recent case of Edwards v. Edwards(2008) 162 Cal App.4th 136. 75 Cal Rptr. 3d 458 suggested a way to handle/end a child support Order for a child past the age of majority, the moral is simple: if you want to pay child support for an adult child, do so voluntarily and not  subject to a court order.

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