When Support Ends

Child support can be stopped once a child reaches a certain age or if other special circumstances exist.


Support orders can be terminated for these reasons:

  • Child reaches age 18 and no longer attends an accredited high school full time
  • Child reaches the age of 19
  • Child marries
  • Child dies
  • Child enlists in the armed services
  • Child is deported
  • Legal custody of the child changes

The Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) can only help with Termination (PDF) if legal custody has changed, if a parent or child has died or eligible people complete a Request to Terminate Support (PDF). Even after a support order has ended, the person ordered to pay support must still pay past-due support.


In Ohio, children emancipate when they reach 18 and graduate from high school or on their 19th birthday if they continue at attend high school on a full-time basis. Early emancipation can happen based on certain actions of the child, such as if the child gets married or joins the armed services.

It is important to contact the CSEA prior to your 18 year old's emancipation to ensure proper continuation or termination of your child support order. Documents that may be required by the courts or the CSEA for emancipation include:

  • Copy of diploma, if the child is 18
  • Letter from school stating child has graduated or withdrawn, if age 18
  • Marriage Certificate for the child if married