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Who Pays for Private School?

How Child Support is Determined in California

Private School

As far as child support is concerned, sometimes the issue of the cost of private school comes up. Typically one parent goes to court and asks the judge to make an order that the other parent has to share the cost of private school. The standard rule is that the judge is not going to make an order that forces a parent to pay for private school. Why? Because there is public school available everywhere, and public school is effectively free. If you want your child to go to private school, sometimes the judge will say “if you want your child to go to private school, you pay for it.” Now, are there exceptions to this? And the answer is yes. If your child has been going to private school for nine years and all of a sudden in their second year of high school, you wanna say “I don’t wanna pay for private school anymore.” If the other parent asks the judge to order you to pay for private school, the judge can make an order for the child or for private school if they consider some underlying facts.

Those underlying facts could be:
      • • Has the child been going to private school for some time?
      • • Are we continuing the same private school?
      • • Is the private school in the area of the home or homes of the parents?
      • • And have the parents been sharing in that cost, all along?
      • • Is the cost of the private school affordable, relatively affordable for the parents?
      • • And any other relevant fact
    If the answer to all of those things are yes and that the schools are nearby, then the judge absolutely can order that both parents share in the continued cost of private school.

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