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How You and Your Ex Can Help Your Child Prepare for College Together

Posted on in Children

Illinois child custody attorney, Illinois family law attorneyIf you have been divorced for many years, you are probably fairly comfortable navigating the world of parenting after a divorce. If you are recently divorced, you might still be trying to determine what works and what does not work in this field. Co-parenting is a collaborative effort and the decisions you and your former partner make are generally driven by your child's academic, social, and medical needs. For many Illinois families, a young adult attending college after high school is one of the events that requires careful planning and cooperation between divorced parents.

Although your son or daughter is legally an adult at this age, it is not uncommon for you and your former partner to continue to support him or her financially. In fact, there may be a clause in your divorce settlement requiring one or both of you to contribute to his or her college expenses. But even if the financial aspect of your roles as parents in your child's college education is squared away, there are other issues you need to clarify. Who will drop your child off to campus? In which home will he or she stay during school breaks? How will expenses outside tuition and fees that your child incurs be handled?

Remember, Your Child Is an Adult

Your child is the one who will be directing these decisions – within reason. Obviously, your child cannot force you or your former spouse to pay for his or her Greek society dues or study abroad program. But as far as determining where he or she will stay during breaks, your child is in the driver's seat.

Make a Family Game Plan

The best way to prepare your son or daughter for college is to work as a team. When your child is a high schooler visiting potential schools, determine which parent will accompany him or her on these visits. Take an active role in vetting potential colleges and programs as your child works through the application process.

Talk to your child and your former partner about campus drop off and pick up before school begins. You might both want to have a role in his or her move-in day; it is an emotional day for many families. Before school starts is also a good time to have discussions about time management, adjusting to life on campus, conflict resolution with a roommate, and drinking with your child. Although you cannot control what he or she does while at school, you can provide him or her with valuable guidance.

Work with a Kane County Family Lawyer

As your child grows and develops, your relationship with him or her matures. Alongside this relationship's evolution, your relationship with your former spouse will change as well. For guidance and representation as you weather these changes, work with an experienced Kane County family lawyer. Contact the Goostree Law Group today to set up your initial legal consultation with a member of our firm.



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