At the end of your relationship, you probably have many concerns as a parent. How can you protect your relationship with your children? Will they have the support they need to pursue the activities they love and the education they need?

While these immediate concerns may be pressing, it’s important to consider another aspect of your child’s future after your divorce: higher education.

What does the law say?

In California, child support payments help cover a child’s living expenses, but these obligations typically end when a child reaches age 18.  Most college students are too old to be receiving financial help and cannot rely on child support to help pay for their college tuition.

Two ways to set aside funds for your child’s college costs

While you are not required to pay for the cost of higher education for your child, if you and your former spouse want to address those expenses, there are options available to you.

Another option is to establish a trust. If you currently have money set aside for your child’s education or if you have funds that could be set aside, placing that money in a trust for your child will protect it regardless of any future changes in your life situation.

You should consider both of these sooner rather than later. However, like any plans you might make for your child’s future, they are an important way to protect your child even as your life situation changes.