Payment of Expenses For College Aged Child During Divorce Proceedings
It is not uncommon for parents to pay college tuition and living expenses while a child is attending college.
However, can a parent’s unilateral decision to continue to use marital funds to pay an adult child’s college tuition and expenses, be used against that parent, while the parents are involved in a divorce proceeding.
The answer is Yes, Any duty a parent has to pay an adult child’s college expenses is moral rather than legal.” Riera v. Riera, 86 So. 3d 1163, 1167 (Fla. 3d DCA 2012).
In the case of Kunsman v. Wall, The Forth District Court of Appeal found that since there is no legal obligation to support a grown child (absent a contractual arrangement), the Husband’s expenditure of marital funds on the adult child should not have been considered a marital obligation and the $728.60 (tuition) in marital funds spent by the Husband should be equitably divided.
The lesson here is that if you have a college aged child while you are going through a Dissolution of Marriage action, make sure you have is an agreement with your spouse prior to paying tuition or other big ticket items for the child.