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Does Child Support In Florida Cover Private School Tuition?


As a Florida parent with a school-going child going through a divorce, one of the questions you might be asking yourself is, “Does child support cover private school tuition?” A child’s education is quite important, and Florida courts understand this too well. However, considering how expensive private schools can be, Florida courts must be considerate when it comes to asking one parent to pay for their child’s private tuition.

So, does child support in Florida cover private school tuition? Generally, child support normally does not cover private school tuition. However, a Florida court can require a parent to pay for a private school in some limited circumstances. Read on to learn about these limited circumstances.

Child Support and Private Tuition

In Florida, the case of Forrest v. Ron sheds light on the issue of child support and private tuition. In this case, it was decided that a Florida court can order a parent to pay for a private school if a number of factors are met. According to the Florida District Court of Appeals that handled this case, a judge may order a parent to pay for their child’s private school tuition if;

  1. They have the financial ability to do so;
  2. Attending private school is in the best interest of the child; and
  3. The child’s attendance to private school is within their family’s customary standard of living

When it comes to proving that attending private school is in a child’s best interest, there are a number of ways to do this. For example, if a private school offers superior education, then you can argue that your child attending that private school is in their best interest. Also, if a child has already begun attending private school and they have made friends there, you can argue that continuing to attend the school is in your child’s best interest. When a child is taken from a school where they have already made friends and taken to another one, it can be challenging for them to make new friends or to cope in the new school environment.

It is crucial to note that when it comes to child support and private tuition, a judge can consider whether a parent had previously agreed to pay for their child’s private tuition until they reach a certain age or indefinitely. If the other parent initially agreed to pay the child’s private tuition indefinitely or until they reach a certain age, bring this up with your attorney, and they will advise you accordingly.

In summary, the Court cannot force a parent to pay for their child’s private school tuition in a Florida divorce. Usually, if parents cannot agree on whether or not their child should go to private school or who will pay for their child’s private school, the Court will consider the factors outlined in this article before making a decision. Generally, if you want the other financially able parent to pay for your child’s private tuition, you need to demonstrate to the court that ordering them not to pay;

  1. would conflict with your family’s standard of living;
  2. is not in your child’s best interest

Contact a Fort Lauderdale Child Support Attorney

If you have any questions about child support in Florida, don’t hesitate to contact a Fort Lauderdale child support attorney at Joyce A. Julian, P.A. We can also help you create a child support plan or deal with a support dispute.


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