Child Support and Emancipation

school kidsChild support ends when a child is emancipated. You can’t just stop paying child support if you decide your child is independent or if you child moves out, however. In Arizona, a child is not emancipated until a court declares the emancipation. So when can a child become emancipated?

To become emancipated, a child must prove the following to the court:

–        He or she is at least 16 years of age

–        He or she is a resident of the state of Arizona

–        The child understands what it means to be emancipated and understands all of the obligations and risks involved with being self-supporting

–        It is the child’s wish to be emancipated

–        Proof of employment or other means of support, including housing and health care

–        That the child has been living independently for at least three consecutive months, or that living at home with the parent or parents is not healthy or safe, or that the parents have given written consent to the emancipation.

The court will also consider whether the child has a criminal record and if the child attends school and what kind of success he or she has at school, as well as what the parents’ opinions are about the proposed emancipation. It is up to the judge to decide if emancipation is in the child’s best interest. If emancipation is granted, parental rights are terminated, including any obligation to pay child support. A child who is emancipated cannot ask that a parent pay support directly to him or her.

The Sampair Group is prepared to represent you in your child support or emancipation case. Our attorneys are experienced in this area of law and are ready to help you get the results you want. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.