The Termination Points of Illinois Child Support Obligations

Often, when parents of minor children get divorced, one of the parents will be assigned to make regular child support payments. One thing to note is that this child support obligation generally does not last for a child’s entire life, it usually has a termination point. Today, we will be going over some of the primary termination points for child support obligations here in Illinois.

Generally, an Illinois child support obligation only lasts as long as the child it relates to is a minor. So, for a majority of child support obligations, their termination point is when the child the payments are for turns 18.

The obligation can end earlier than this when the child the obligation is connected to becomes emancipated. There are several different ways the emancipation of a child can come about. A child may express a desire for independence and start living on their own. A child may become financially independent through a job they have. Also, emancipation can occur through a child entering the military or getting married.

Now, an important thing to note is that this is just some general information on the topic. Each individual situation could have its own unique factors which influence when a given child support obligation will end.

Whether or not a child support obligation has terminated is not something a parent with a child support obligation should simply guess at, as the consequences of guessing incorrectly can be rather major. If a parent thinks their child support obligation has ended and stops making payments, but turns out to have been wrong, they could face failure to pay child support allegations and the major potential penalties that can go along with such allegations.

Thus, having a discussion with an experienced family law attorney is something that individuals with child support obligations who have questions about when their obligation terminates may want to consider.

Source: FindLaw, “Illinois Child Support Guidelines,” Accessed Aug. 14, 2014

Attorney Natalie Stec

Natalie M. Stec, born and raised in Illinois, and earned her Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her practice has been concentrated in significant pre and post decree marital and family law cases; including custody, visitation, support, and paternity matters. She has important criminal defense experience in both misdemeanor and felony cases. She is a very dedicated and passionate litigator. [ Attorney Bio ]