Child support stopped when son turned 18


Our 2007 mediated court order stated that a Social Security Disability Payment and a VA Disability Payment would be accepted as child support. Everything worked fine until 2017 when the VA said 18 years of age is an adult and stopped payment despite proof that he is a full time college student. Indiana says 21 (or 19 years of age starting in 2012). How does my son get that year of support? We called multiple times but they say it was not "child support," it was "dependent child payments." Don't they have to honor Indiana judge court orders that this is child support?

Jim's Reply:

That a court would order that VA disability would be accepted as child support would be unusual in my experience. Under federal laws VA disability payments aren't allowed to be assigned in that way. VA is a federal agency and not subject to the orders of a state family court judge. In this case VA is correct that they weren't paying anything other than a dependent child allowance and that usually ends upon the majority of the dependent at age 18. The obligor (the person who pays child support) is generally responsible to meet the obligations of the divorce decree. If you feel that hasn't happened, you'll have to return to the family court for resolution.