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Paying for your child’s college after a divorce

Divorcing your significant other involves a period of adjustment. One of the many things you may need to adjust to is learning how to get by on one income. You may, too, have concerns about financing the higher education of any children you share with your former spouse now that the two of you have detangled your lives from one another’s.

In Georgia, the courts cannot force you or your ex to finance your shared child’s college education, but that does not mean you and your ex cannot come up with an agreement as to how to do so on your own. If you wish to make paying for your child’s college easier on everyone, there are some steps you may be able to take to help do so. These steps include:

Identifying where money for college will come from

Maybe your child has grandparents who plan to finance some or all of his or her college education, or maybe you have savings plans in place, such as a 529 plan. Regardless of how much money you have tucked away for your child’s schooling, outlining exactly where it comes from, and how you intend to use it, can help you avoid unpleasant surprises down the line.

Discussing what happens in the event of a remarriage

It may also serve you and your college-bound child well to address what will happen as far as paying for college if you or your ex remarries before your child leaves for school. While you and your ex may not plan to have your new spouses contribute financially to your child’s college education, you still may need to understand how remarrying may impact your son or daughter’s financial aid eligibility.

Ultimately, the more you and your ex can sort out regarding paying for your child’s college during your divorce, the better off your child will likely be in the long run. Making these plans in advance may help you identify the best possible schools for your child, and it can also give you more time to prepare financially ahead of him or her leaving for college.

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