Child Support for Special Needs Children

Illinios divorce attorney, Illinois family law attorney, DuPage County child support lawyer,In the United States, a child is considered to be an adult when he or she reaches the age of 18. Usually, it is assumed that an adult can find work and support him or herself financially. But what about adults with significant physical or mental disabilities that prevent them from financially supporting themselves? If you are a parent of a child with special needs and you are currently making child support payments for his or her care, you might wonder how your responsibility to provide this support will change when he or she reaches adulthood.

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act outlines the requirements for child support in Illinois. It specifies the amount of money a noncustodial parent is expected to pay in child support and the circumstances under which he or she is required to pay it. It also addresses the needs of young adults with disabilities who require parental support into their twenties and beyond. Many divorcing couples with special needs children include the terms of this continuing child support in their child support agreement.

Seeking Child Support for a Disabled Young Adult

The custodial parent of a young adult with significant mental or physical disabilities may file an application to have his or her former spouse continue to pay child support after the child becomes an adult. This application can come before or after the child’s 18th birthday. Whether or not this application is approved by the Division of Child Support Services depends on the following:

  • How significantly the child’s disability impacts his or her ability to earn a living;
  • Each parent’s ability to continue to provide financial support; and
  • The child’s medical and other outside support needs, such as the need for regular therapy, doctor’s visits, caretaking, or placement in a home for the disabled.

Sometimes, a young adult’s parents choose to establish a trust fund for their child. A trust fund is a monetary account that’s set aside to provide for the child after his or her parents pass away or are no longer able to provide the support he or she needs. Unlike other assets, a trust fund can not be taken away through a lawsuit, a contested will, a divorce, or bankruptcy. If your child has significant special needs and will require financial care after you’re no longer able to make child support payments, talk to your attorney or a trusted financial adviser about setting up a trust fund for him or her. When you establish a trust fund, you are required to appoint a trustee to ensure that the funds are properly used for your child’s care in the future.

Child Support Attorneys in DuPage County

At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we put our clients’ needs first. Contact our team of experienced Aurora divorce attorneys to discuss your child’s financial needs. We can help you work out a plan that will ensure that he or she is taken care of after you’re no longer able to provide financial support.

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