Do parents have any obligations towards disabled children past age 18?

Years ago, I posted a thread asking whether parents can hand their child an eviction notice at midnight of their 18th birthday (the answer seems to be yes).

What if the 18 year old newly minted legal adult has some sort of serious disability? Does that make any difference under the law? Do parents have any legal obligations to take care of their disabled children past 18?


Thank you.

Jasmine’s source seems to be referring mostly to legislation on court ordered child support, though some are indeed outright statements that both parents have an obligation to support a child unable to work for a living. But most of the citations are for court ordered child support, and many are worded to allow, not mandate, that the court order support to continue beyond the child’s 18th birthday. And some states do not have any such law, or requires the consent of both parents to enact such an agreement.

Certainly not in Pennsylvania. I have a 28 year old disabled daughter in PA. Her mother and I are her legal guardians. I have zero legal obligation to provide financial support, either as her parent or as her guardian. I do provide medical insurance (through my employer’s plan, which allows disabled adult children to remain on my plan past age 26) and supplemental financial support (mainly clothing and taking her for vacations and meals). Her basic living expenses and supports (group home, aides as necessary) are provided through the state Medicaid and associated waivers.

Not to go off topic but even with children who aren’t disabled, how many realistically are “kicked out”? Maybe confirmation bias but I’ve never seen a teenager who came from an okay family being kicked out and on the street here in (at least more than 2-3 isolated ones). And I know that in the UK/Ireland, council houses are not prioritized to young but to single mothers and then families.

I presume the majority fall in the same category I did with my parents - “we will help you if you need help, but we need to see you have made and are making an effort to help yourself.”

Plus some parents are still indulgent to a fault too. But in my late teens, it was not impossible to find at least a part time job or stay in university (or in my case, both.) The case in the news appears to be a guy who decided to keep living at home and letting ma and pa feed him while he did nothing; and I presume the court case was the final stage of years of growing “encouragement” that he get a job, get out in the world, stop freeloading. I do know one case where the parents took the easy route - “we’re selling the house and moving to a small apartment, so you have 3 months to figure out what you’re going to do…”

Have you seen teens from “non okay families” being kicked out? And why are you excluding “non okay families” from your “kicked out” statistics anyways?

Quick hijack: why do you make your links so huge, font wise? :slight_smile:

Generally, from what I’ve heard in Friend-of-a-friend anecdotes, “not OK” families usually reach a mutual decision to part ways - “If you aren’t going to follow my rules, get out…” As opposed to not-trouble-making but not energetic twenty-somethings which is what I assume is meant by “ok families”.

AFAIK in Canada, most provinces require the non-custodial parent to continue child support (including help paying tuition) for over-18 children who go to post-secondary education; at least up to the first degree. A friend of mine mentioned once her husband was being dinged for money to support his children with his ex, even though he was pretty sure the one was not in college (they lived in another province). It was easier and about as fast to pay for the rest of the year and wait for a college transcript (and then stop if it was not forthcoming) than to go to court to try and prove lack of attendance.

Just as a side note, there are a few cases in the news in past years where children are being made to pay for their parents’ care too. Plus, there was a Quebec case - based on ancient French law - which decided that grandparents had to pay child support for the grandchild, since the father was not around to do so. (But, IIRC, he grandparents had a pretty significant participation in the child’s life anyway).

Just because.

Well, that was a let down. I was expecting reasons.:frowning:

Legally, not usually, depends on local laws.

Morally, always.

financially yes if there on some sort of assistance plan in some states

How it works in the state pays out to the offspring

But the state files against your federal income tax return to get paid back dad hasn’t had a federal tax refund since 1980 in the case of my mentally disabled brother because hes not legally an adult

in my case SSA just takes it straight out of his social security retirement account and gives it to me I don’t think calif has anything to do with it anymore

One of the toughest things I’ve had to whiteness was a man who had to legally cut ties with his daughter. It was the only move logically and financially as she needs 24 hr care, but it was pretty emotionally devastating to him.