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Questions & Answers

Child Support for youth over the age of 18

I have a client whose wife left the family home and is not living common law with a new partner. She left 3 children over the age of 18 but one is a full-time student in a post-secondary institution in another city and one has special needs with an intellectual disability. All of the emphasis to date has been the fact that my client will be liable for spousal support but my reading seems to suggest that child support should be payable. it has been frustrating for this Dad not to be able to find someone who can advocate his position adequately for the sake of his children whereas (I can say this because I’m female) a Mom might have already been awarded child support. It seems that there is a bias against Good Dads. I’m not sure if I can ask you that question but a secondary question is whether a youth over the age of 18 with a proven intellectual disability that receives ODSP can sue his parent (in this case his Mom) for support directly.

— Bella G.


Hi, Yes, on the face of it, there appears to be an obligation to pay child support. I cannot imagine a judge would not order child support. If the child is older than 18 then child support ends unless the child cannot become self-sufficient because of their health or because they are pursuing post secondary education on a full time basis. So, in this case, it appears that there would be child support owed for the child with special needs and for the child in university. Of course, there may be other facts that I am unaware of that might lead to a different result but based on what you have stated, I believe child support is owed. Lastly, any child can sue for child support from their parent. My advice is based on Ontario law presently. I hope this helps.

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