Do I have to contribute to my child’s graduate school?
An Ocean County trial court judge has recently ruled that a child over twenty three years old who wants to attend graduate school has the burden of showing that a non-custodial parent should be required to contribute to the costs of this continued education. In J.C. v. A.C., the parties’ divorce agreement directed for the sharing of college education but made no mention of any post-graduate education. The custodial parent brought an action to require the non-custodial parent to contribute to their oldest child’s desire to obtain a Master’s Degree.
In this unpublished opinion, Judge Jones concluded that graduate school is different than college and the law supporting that parent’s have an obligation to contribute to college expenses as a form of child support could not be automatically applied to graduate school studies. There could be circumstances where a child could satisfy their burden of proof but it was not to be automatic.
Judge Jones commented that grown children should be expected to pay their own bills and that many graduate school students hold jibs and pay their own school expenses. Ultimately the court scheduled a hearing to determine whether or not contribution was warranted in this particular case.
All of the attorneys at Domers & Bonamassa are well versed and have years of experience addressing family law issues, no matter how complicated. Contact us today at (856) 596-2888 for a private consultation. We appear in the following counties: Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, Cumberland, Salem, Mercer, Ocean, Atlantic and Cape May. Our practice areas include: divorce, custody, parenting time, child support, alimony, domestic violence, college expenses, equitable distribution, name changes, step parent adoptions, paternity issues, child abuse and neglect, prenuptial agreements, mediation and arbitration.
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