When Does Child Support End in Ontario?

Child support agreement on a desk with a gavel next to it

Child support is put in place to support a child’s overall well-being. Your role as a parent goes on forever, and so does your financial responsibility until they become financially independent. Once an Ontario family court mandates child support, you are required to pay until the enforced time ends. In this blog, we talk about different situations when child support payments in Ontario end and when they continue for a long time. 

So, when does child support end? 

In Ontario, the standard age of majority is 18 years. Many people assume that child support in Ontario ends at that age. That’s only true in some situations. If after turning 18 years, your child is financially dependent on you, for example, completing post-secondary education, you are needed to pay support for more years. If your child starts a 4-year university program at 18, you’ll have to pay child support till they are 22 years. 

Children with disabilities and special needs

When a child has a disability or special needs, child support may extend indefinitely or as long as the child remains dependent on their parents due to their condition. If your child has a severe disability that prevents them from becoming financially independent, parents might be required to provide support throughout the child’s life.

When can you apply to end child support? 

Child support can sometimes be modified or terminated before your child turns 18 years. If a child becomes financially independent before reaching the age of majority, parents can request the court to end support payments. It could be either through a full-time job, marriage, or receiving a huge sum of money. 

In some cases, children may seek emancipation, legally freeing themselves from their parents’ control and ending their entitlement to support. A child can only be emancipated when they can demonstrate that they can support themselves financially and live independently. 

A lawyer signing a document on a desk with a pen and a gavel

How to apply to terminate child support in Ontario? 

To terminate child support, you must follow a formal legal process that includes some documentation and sometimes potential challenges. Before apply for termination, make sure your child meets the following criteria: 

  • 18 years of age 
  • Completed post-secondary education 
  • Financially-independent 
  • No longer requires support and are independent to live on their own 

You’ll need to submit the following documents to prove that they meet the criteria. 

  • A copy of the original child support order or agreement.
  • Proof of the child’s age and educational status.
  • Evidence of the child’s financial independence (e.g., employment records, proof of income).
  • Any relevant medical records if the termination is due to changes in the child’s health status.

File a Motion to Change

Here’s how to proceed:

  1. Complete Form 15: To request the court to change or end the child support order. Clearly state the reasons for the termination and attach all supporting documents.
  2. Prepare Form 14A: An affidavit (Form 14A) must accompany Form 15. This sworn statement provides detailed information about your request and the circumstances that justify ending child support.
  3. Serve the Other Party: Serve a copy of the completed forms and supporting documents to the other parent or guardian involved in the original support order. You can do this through personal service, mail, or courier, and provide proof of service.
  4. File With Court: After serving the other party, file the original forms and proof of service with the court. Pay any applicable filing fees. The court will schedule a case conference or hearing to review your application.

At the case conference or hearing, both parties will have the opportunity to present their case. Be prepared to explain why child support should end and provide evidence to support your claims.

When dealing with matters of court, especially child support, always seek legal counsel. Our child support lawyers in Brampton are here to help you all the way. Get in touch today to book a consultation!

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