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When does Child Support end in Missouri?

One of the more common questions I receive is when does Child Support end in Missouri? My answers is inevitably that the Division of Family Services Order or the Court Order needs to be consulted first to determine if there is a set end date. If the order does not articulate a specific end date for child support, then the default provisions of the Missouri statute control:

Unless the circumstances of the child manifestly dictate otherwise and the court specifically so provides, the obligation of a parent to make child support payments shall terminate when the child:

(1) Dies;

(2) Marries;

(3) Enters active duty in the military;

(4) Becomes self-supporting, provided that the custodial parent has relinquished the child from parental control by express or implied consent;

(5) Reaches age eighteen, unless the provisions of subsection 4 or 5 of this section apply; or

(6) Reaches age twenty-one, unless the provisions of the child support order specifically extend the parental support order past the child’s twenty-first birthday for reasons provided by subsection 4 of this section.

With respect to item (4), the Court may continue child support payments past the child’s 21st birthday if the child is physically or mentally incapacitated from supporting himself and insolvent and unmarried.

Given the volume of divorce, legal separation, child custody, and child support cases we handle and have handled, we can offer a quick, thorough consultation regarding these issues.

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