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avocat pension alimentaire

Child support is legally required: no parent can avoid it

The parental obligation to provide child support is a matter of public order. This means that a private agreement between the parties whereby one parent is released of their obligation is not valid.


Legal obligation for each parent to contribute to maintaining their child in common

The mother and father must pay a share of the accommodation, maintenance, healthcare, security, education, training and development of their children proportionate to their resources.

By resources we refer to all professional income and revenue from tangible and intangible assets for the mother and father, as well as all benefits and other means that contribute to their quality of life and that of their children.

Each mother and father contributes to the expenses arising from the obligation set out in article 203, section 1 of the French Civil Code, based on their share of the accumulated resources: each parent is only required to pay part of the debt, not all or half.


Maintenance of an adult child

If the child does not complete their education, the obligation remains after the child has reached legal age.

The child support obligation does not cease when the child reaches legal age, but continues until they complete their education. In certain cases, this may be until they find their first job.

In return, this means that an adult child who is studying must study or train with due diligence and seriousness in order to achieve economic and financial independence.


Ordinary and extraordinary expenses

Expenses include ordinary expenses and extraordinary expenses.

Ordinary expenses are normal expenses related to the daily upkeep of the child.

Extraordinary expenses refers to one-off spending that is required or essential due to accidental or unusual circumstances, and which exceed the usual budget for daily support for the child. The daily budget is used to establish child support contributions, where applicable.


The judge may require the parties to open a bank account to receive contributions

The father or mother may request the judge to require the parties to open a bank account especially for payment of the contributions established

In this case, the judge will establish at least:

  1. The contribution from each mother and father towards expected expenses, and the benefits due to the child that must be paid to this account.
  2. The day of the month when these contributions and benefits must be paid.
  3. How these amounts should be paid into the account.
  4. The expenses paid using these amounts.
  5. How spending is monitored.
  6. How overdrafts will be settled.
  7. How surpluses in the account will be allocated. Payments of contributions made in performance of this article are considered child support contributions as part of the support obligation.


Effective enforcement of the support obligation

The support obligation can be enforced in the event of non-payment. Child support debts are preferential claims. They are a priority and can be recovered from any of the debtor’s income.