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Since 1989 the Child Support Agency has governed the calculation/assessment of child support in Australia. There are a number of factors which terminate the obligation of a parent to pay child support and these are called “terminating events”. One of the “terminating events” is the child reaching the age of 18 years.
It is commonly believed that a parent’s responsibility to financially support their child ceases when each child reaches the age of 18.
The Family Law Act (section 66(l)) provides that the Court has the power to Order that one or both parents provide financial support to a child who reaches or is over the age of 18 in certain circumstances.
The Court may order this in circumstances where the maintenance is required:
The application for child maintenance after the child attains 18 years of age can be made by the child, a parent of the child or a grandparent of the child or another concerned person.
In determining whether or not to make the Order, the Court (Family Court of Australia or Federal Circuit Court of Australia) will consider a number of factors which includes:
Watson & Watson as part of a property settlement or Court process considers whether a child might need adult child maintenance (for example by reason of suffering from a disability/impairment). We may make provision for the future care and financial support of that child a part of a property settlement.. A Child Maintenance Trust could be established.
Watson & Watson have significant experience in making applications for adult child maintenance.
One alternative to be considered is a Trust.
If you as a concerned parent, are unsure as to whether your adult child may be entitled to Adult Child Maintenance or you have any queries regarding Adult Child Support, please do not hesitate to contact Richard Watson, Family Law Solicitor or Shereen Da Gloria his Assistant to discuss your concerns to ensure that your Adult Child is provided for in the best possible way.
This is only a preliminary view and is not to be taken as legal advice without first contacting Watson & Watson Solicitors on 02 9221 6011.
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