Do I Have to Pay For College if I Get Divorced?
Parents cannot be forced to pay for college unless they get divorced! As part of any court settlement or after a trial, there will likely be a provision in your court order requiring one or both parents to contribute to the cost of college for their minor children. C.G.S. 46b-56c. But there are limits:
- The total contribution towards college cannot exceed the cost of your child attending in-state at University of Connecticut at Storrs.
- The college costs will only include tuition, room & board, books, medical insurance and necessary fees. The court cannot order a parent to pay ancillary expenses of a child’s attendance at college such as cell phone, car insurance, clothing, sorority/fraternity fees, travel to and from school and general living expenses.
- Once your child turns age 23, the college order will end, even if your child is still attending college.
- Your child must attend full-time and make his or her academic records available to both parents, failing which the college order will be suspended.
An educational support order is modifiable based upon a substantial change in circumstances, such as a job loss. If your child is young when you get divorced, the Court can reserve jurisdiction to make a college order in the future if there is no agreement between the parents at the time your child is ready for college.