Palmer Rodak & Associates
Palmer Rodak & Associates
Certified Family Law Specialists State Bar of California Board of Legal SpecializationServing your Community for 19 Years
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Funding college after a divorce

It is typical for California parents to feel concerned about how they will fund their children's college educations. After a divorce, parents might be even more concerned about this as each parent individually might be struggling a bit more financially than they were prior to getting divorced. Understanding how to accommodate this reality with the desire to provide a higher education for one's children is important and ideally requires a bit of foresight.

Fast Web explains that there are no laws mandating either parent to pay for a child to go to college. When getting divorced, these costs are not standard in a divorce decree and are not part of a typical child support order. Some couples do choose to create a separate formal agreement about how to pay for college as part of their divorce proceedings. It is important when doing this that all of the potential costs be considered.

Tuition may be a large chunk of the college bill but it is far from the only expense that a student will have. Room, board, books and fees can add up quickly. Additionally, things like discretionary spending money, car expenses and travel to and from home on school breaks should be factored in as well.

When applying for financial aid, the Federal Student Aid department of the U.S. Department of Education explains that students need only report the income of one parent on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. This should be the parent with whom the student lived most of the time in the prior year. If time was spent equally between both parents, then the parent who provided more financial support should be used for the FAFSA application.


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Palmer Rodak & Associates
Certified Family Law Specialists State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization

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