Most Judgments for Dissolution of Marriage provide for the financing of an emancipated child’s college expenses. Often times those expenses are spelled out, and often times they are reserved pursuant to 750 ILCS 5/513.
Section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act provides the following:
(1) except for good cause shown, the actual cost of the child’s post- secondary expenses, including tuition and fees, provided that the cost for tuition and fees does not exceed the amount of in-state tuition and fees paid by a student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for the same academic year;
(2) except for good cause shown, the actual costs of the child’s housing expenses, whether on-campus or off-campus, provided that the housing expenses do not exceed the cost for the same academic year of a double- occupancy student room, with a standard meal plan, in a residence hall operated by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign;
(3) the actual costs of the child’s medical expenses, including medical insurance, and dental expenses;
(4) the reasonable living expenses of the child during the academic year and periods of recess:
(A) if the child is a resident student attending a post-secondary educational program; or
(B) if the child is living with one party at that party’s home and attending a post-secondary educational program as a non-resident student, in which case the living expenses include an amount that pays for the reasonable cost of the child’s food, utilities, and transportation; and,
(5) the cost of books and other supplies necessary to attend college.
One important change to note is that as of January 1, 2016, college expenses are capped at the tuition for the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Furthermore, in a trailer bill that took effect January 1, 2017, post-educational expenses shall be capped at the “in-state” tuition of the University of Illinois in Urbana -Champaign. If your child is or will be attending college, it is important to
review the exact language of your Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage to see if college expenses are specifically listed in said agreement. Otherwise, the expenses in 750 ILCS 5/513 will control.