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How adult children factor into divorce

Previous posts on this blog have discussed child custody issues that can come up during divorce. There is no doubt that child custody is one of the most contentious and emotionally charged topics during a separation. However, things may be a little different when the divorcing couple has grown children. A recent article highlights how to handle divorce when it involves adult children.


Many California residents have experienced or are currently going through divorce. If people have children, or know a friend who is divorcing with children, those people know child custody determinations are not easy topics between spouses. Yet, when the children in the relationship are grown, there are less issues to decide, and if handled well, the questions having to do with the couple's children can be quickly answered.

When grown children are involved in divorce, the question of which home the child will reside is no longer as much of an issue. Adult children who are away at college or live on their own will have alternative housing arrangements already. The question then becomes whose house to visit on holidays or during the summer. Even in these cases, the decision is much more in the hands of the children, who are more capable of determining what is best.


Additionally, child support is generally not much of an issue. While divorcing spouses may still need to determine whether one spouse pays the college tuition bills, generally, there is no obligation for either parent to continue to pay the specific support agreement for the child past the age of 18 or 21.


Ultimately, divorcing with adult children in California can mean a less contentious divorce in some ways. However, there are still complicated questions to be answered dealing with property division and spousal support, among others and working with an attorney could help make the process even more streamlined.


Source: Work Goes Strong, "Divorce Rights: Parents, Grown Children and Divorce," Susan Crandell, Nov. 2, 2012.

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