No responsible parent wants their divorce to harm their child’s ability to get a good education. That includes being able to go to the college of their choice. Whether your child is still in elementary school or they’re in high school and already looking at colleges and universities, you likely want to make sure that both you and your spouse will continue putting away money for their higher education and that you’ll share in related expenses post-divorce.
Whether you’re using mediation to divorce or you’re working with your legal representatives to negotiate agreements, you can and should detail and codify your joint commitment to funding at least a portion of your child’s education if that’s an important goal for you and your spouse.
Committing to a savings plan
Whether you’re contributing to a 529 plan or other savings instrument for your child’s college education, you can agree to how much you’ll each continue to deposit. You may have a maximum dollar amount in mind that you plan to contribute to your child’s higher education. Of course, if your child’s college years are a decade or more off, it can be difficult (and frightening) to try to determine what college costs will be that far in the future.
If you haven’t already, this is probably a good time to give some thought to whether you plan to fund the entire cost of college, help your child seek federal student aid or other loans for some of the cost and/or expect them to look for scholarship opportunities.
Continued cooperation will be important as the college years approach
As your child gets closer to considering colleges – or maybe deciding that they’d rather pursue a profession that requires another type of training or experience – it will be important for both of you to present a united front in support of your child, if possible. There’s a lot to consider, and every family situation is unique. By seeking sound legal guidance, you can better work with your co-parent to ensure that your child’s dreams aren’t derailed by your divorce.