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A child's unique request for child support

On behalf of Joe Lucas at Lucas Law

When you think of a legal matter concerning child support, it is easy to envision the financial battle between two adverse parents of a child. However, a recently resolved child support case, which garnered national attention, had different circumstances. Here, the parents were allies.

This is because the child, herself, sued for the receipt of child support benefits for the purpose of educational endeavors. However, when the case reached the court, the presiding judge refused to order the parents of the petitioner to pay private school and college expenses for their daughter, who moved out of the house a few days before her 18th birthday.

The plaintiff in this matter is in grade 12. After moving in with her boyfriend, the young woman initiated a case against her parents, asserting she was entitled to child support, tuition for her private school, medical assistance and other expenses. She also demanded money for college and fees associated with the legal matter. The plaintiff is a good student; however, the parents stopped paying the plaintiff's bills after she continuously disobeyed their home rules, including:

  • Doing chores around the home
  • Being considerate
  • Keeping a strict curfew
  • Ending the relationship with her boyfriend

In the suit, the plaintiff claimed that the parents' living standards were unreasonable. The child also asserted that her parents were insulting, caused her eating problems and forced her to pursue a basketball scholarship. On the other hand, the parents argued that the child had been emancipated. In other words, she voluntarily left the home because she did not want to comply with the parents' orders.

The plaintiff requested an emergency order, which would have awarded the young woman more than $600 a week. However, the court ruled that no true emergency existed because the child's school had agreed to let the plaintiff stay, despite unpaid tuition. Moreover, the final deadline for college applications is not until May 1, 2014.

Fortunately, in March 2014, the child and her parents came to an agreement on the matter, and the child plans to move back in with her family.

Child support and other issues concerning children

Family laws concerning children often focus on the best interests of the child. In this particular matter, the parents and child did not see eye-to-eye on child-rearing issues. While this type of case is rare, it inevitably directs focus onto the subject of child support laws and the applicability of such mandates.

If you are dealing with a family law dispute, including child support, speak with a professional attorney in your area. Do not hesitate to bring your unique case forward.

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