In the state of Illinois, child support is an element present in the vast majority of divorce cases involving children. Child support is meant to provide for the basic needs of minor children and is generally no longer enforceable when the child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever comes last. These days, children are often dependent on their parents for a few years after they graduate from high school, especially if they attend college. The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act addresses this issue and provides guidelines for parents who will help pay for their child’s college education.
Covered College Expenses
The court can require one or both parents to be responsible for paying a share of their child’s educational expenses until the child turns 23, or 25 in some circumstances. The potential expenses include:
- Up to five college application
- Two college entrance exams
- One college entrance exam prep course
- Tuition and fees
- Housing expenses, whether on-campus or off-campus
- Medical expenses, including health insurance and dental expenses
- Reasonable living expenses, including food, utilities, and transportation for a non-resident student
- The cost of textbooks or other supplies necessary for the child to attend school.
The court can order that the funds to cover these expenses be paid directly to the child, to the educational institution, to either of the parents, or through the use of a special account or trust created and designated solely for the use of educational expenses....