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How will a divorce impact your children’s college funding?

On Behalf of | Aug 17, 2020 | Divorce |

Everyone knows that divorce is expensive. It can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars from start to finish and also result in the ex-couple splitting their marital estate in two, leaving each with half of the resources that they previously enjoyed.

While divorcing parents are often quick to focus on how the divorce might impact them financially, they may not realize the financial impact the divorce could have on their children. Especially if you have teenagers who are about to head to college or you have children who are already enrolled in college, you should consider the impact that your divorce could have on their financing options and financial stability for school.

Divorce could impact student aid eligibility

When you divorce, you produce two separate households that will have lower overall assets and income than the previous single household. On the surface, that might seem like a favorable situation for student aid, but that isn’t necessarily the case.

For example, if the parent who is the higher earner also has more parenting time or an equal amount with their ex, they will have to report their income as part of their child’s eligibility paperwork. Only now, the family size is at least one person smaller than it was the year before, possibly reducing or eliminating federal student aid for the student involved.

As if that weren’t bad enough, it’s likely that both parents will struggle a bit financially, making it harder for them to contribute to their child’s expenses and tuition costs during and immediately after the divorce.

Are both parents still committed to the higher education of their kids?

There are many things that you and your ex may not agree about during divorce, but wanting the best for your children is probably something you can still see eye-to-eye about. You need to have an earnest discussion, either directly or through your attorneys, about the expenses involved in college and how you intend to resolve those expenses.

While the Texas courts don’t always issue child support that persists through college, you can create your own financial agreement that allows you both to contribute to the education of your child and ensure that your divorce doesn’t interrupt their education. Planning for this issue now, instead of overlooking it, will reduce the stress your divorce causes for everyone in your family.