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What Age Do You Stop Paying Child Support in Canada?

What Age Do You Stop Paying Child Support in Canada?

After the separation, one of the most important concerns becomes child support. Usually, one of the parents or both parents needs to deal with the child’s support. While dealing with child support, there are so many questions that arise in between.

One of the most common questions is when you can stop paying child support. And the answer to this question depends on a lot of factors. In this writing, we are going to discuss those factors.

Also, you will know what age you can stop paying child support in Canada. Read the entire writing to find out more.

What Does Child Support Mean?

Before dealing with child support, it is very important to know what child support is. If you are separated from your partner while having a child, you may have child support. Some people get confused between visitation rights and child support.

Access to visit your children and support are completely two different things. Support means that you or your partner needs to facilitate the basic needs, education, shelter of your children. In most cases, one party needs to deal with this, and sometimes it also can be shared child support.

What Does Child Support Cover?

Regardless it is shared child support or not, parents need to facilitate the basic needs of their children until they become an adult.

Now the question is, what does child support usually cover? Child support coverage will depend on the parent’s financial abilities, income, lifestyle, and physical capabilities. Generally, child support includes the following things:

  • Basic needs of the children
  • Health care or support
  • Educational support
  • Transportation
  • Child care
  • Educational expenses and many more.

Tax Implications on Child Support:

If you are the receiver of the child support, you do not have to pay any tax on that support amount. On the other hand, if you are the payer of the support, the child support amount is not tax-deductible.

Also, the child support payment amount will not affect the recipient’s income or any tax rules.

But you need to remember one thing – there are two different laws regarding the tax implication.

If the written agreement is made after April 1997, the rule mentioned above will be applicable to you. But if it is made before April 1997, you may need to pay the tax on the support payment amount.

What Will Happen If You Stop Paying Child Support in Canada?

If you are the payer of child support, you are obliged to pay it on time. If you fail to do that, you may need to go through some legal consequences. Sometimes, it can be some fines or penalties.

Some of the common penalties for not paying child support are in the following list:

  • Wage garnishments for child support
  • Federal payment garnishment
  • Driving license suspension
  • Seizure of bank account or passport
  • Also, it can impact the bank’s credit rating

When Can I Stop Paying Child Support?

As long as child support is concerned, the parents need to deal with it. But the real question is how long you have to pay the child support.

Of course, there is a time when you can terminate the child support payment. Usually, when the child becomes an adult, the child support automatically gets stopped.

But there are also some different cases where you no longer have to pay support. For example: when the child will be financially independent. And when the child gets another financial source to support their daily needs.

Some of the cases where you can stop paying the child support are given in the following:

1. When The Child Becomes an Adult:

Usually, when the child becomes mature, the child support will no longer continue. Especially in Canada, as soon as the child reaches the age of 18th, s/he will be considered an adult. When they are 18, they can able to make legal decisions by themselves.

So, in that case, child support will not be applicable anymore. In some territories of Canada, this age of maturity varies. But the average age of maturity is between 18-21. So when the child becomes an adult, you do not have to pay the child support anymore.

But under certain circumstances, child support will continue, especially when the child has some physical disabilities or mental instability.

2. When The Child Becomes Financially Independent:

The child not only has to be an adult to discontinue the child support. But also, when the child will be financially self-dependent, the child support will not be applicable for that person anymore. To be self-dependent, the child not necessarily has to be an adult or 18.

If that child can financially support themself, the parents are no longer obligated to pay financial support. The child becomes emancipated in various ways. Such as a person can get married, join the military, or be economically independent in any other way.

3. When The Child Gets College or Any Other Special Support:

Apart from those ways mentioned above, there can be some different ways too. When that person will get admitted into college. Sometimes that college will provide financial support for that person. So in that circumstances, the parents do not have to pay the educational support for their child.

Another possible way can be when the child gets any other special financial support. Especially when the child is physically disabled or when the parents cannot pay the child support. In that case, they may be entitled to get some special support.

Under those circumstances, it is okay if the parents stop paying child support.

Do You Pay Child Support If You Have 50/50 Custody?

As we know, that child custody and child support are two different things. If the parents have 50/50 child custody, it does not necessarily mean they have to share the child’s support.

Child support depends on several factors such as the financial stability of the parents, the monthly income of the parents, etc. So, when the court decides a certain amount to pay as child support. The parents are obliged to pay that amount. But sometimes that child support payments also can be 50/50.

How Can I Avoid Paying Child Support in Canada?

Usually, child support is the right of your child. So, once the court will determine the amount for child support, you need to pay that amount. You have no way to waive that amount. As a result, you cannot avoid paying child support in Canada.

But under some circumstances, when you are not able to afford child support anymore. In that case, you can go through a legal court process.

Again, you can reduce the amount of child support with the help of the court. But to do that, you must have to present proper evidence and documentation to the court.


Sometimes, dealing with child support can be very stressful and crucial. It is quite common to get stuck in any legal process. If you are the payer of child support, you may get confused with certain issues. If you fail to solve those issues on time, it can be a very big problem in the future.

So, it is always advisable and recommended for you to seek legal advice from a professional lawyer. A professional child support lawyer can guide you with legal advice or anything that you need.

Hopefully, this writing helped you know the answer to your question, “What Age Do You Stop Paying Child Support in Canada?