Typically, the term emancipation of a minor is used to refer to the termination of child support or parental support when the child reaches the age of majority, which in Colorado, is 19. However, it can get a lot more complicated than that.
Under Colorado law, a child is technically regarded an adult for purposes of support, when he or she reaches the age of 19. Child support obligations will continue until then. When the child reaches the age of 19, he or she is regarded as being able to look after himself or herself financially, and therefore, the parents’ obligation to continue to support the child no longer applies.
However, there may be exceptions to this rule. For instance, if the child has reached the age of 19, but has not yet completed high school, he is not considered emancipated. This is a fairly common situation in Colorado. In such cases, the child is still in high school, and therefore, may not be considered to be capable of looking after himself financially. In such cases, the child support payments will continue until the child has graduated from high school, and payments will continue up to one month after graduation.
If the child suffers from some kind of physical, or mental disability, then child support payments will continue beyond the age of 19, and in fact, throughout the duration of the disability.
Under Colorado law, a child may also be considered to be emancipated even before he reaches the age of 19. For instance, in those cases where the child becomes employed before he or she reaches the age of 19, joins the military, or gets married, he or she may be considered emancipated and the parental obligations of child support no longer apply.
If you have questions about termination of child support, speak with a family lawyer at our firm.