How to Waive Child Support in a Divorce Agreement

By Mary Jane Freeman

Baby girl (3-6 months) lying on blanket, smiling

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Both parents are financially responsible for their children under the law. This obligation doesn't go away simply because they may divorce, even if one spouse agrees to take on the financial burden alone. Any divorce agreement in which a parent waives the right to child support is not likely to be upheld in court, regardless of the state the family lives in.

Divorce Agreement Resolves Marital Issues

A divorce agreement, also known as a settlement or separation agreement, is where spouses outline the mutually agreed-upon terms of their divorce. Typically, these involve marital issues, such as property distribution, alimony and child custody. Although state laws differ, courts routinely approve settlement agreements and incorporate their terms into the final divorce decree, provided the terms are reasonable.

Waiving Child Support Not Allowed

Although spouses are generally free to address child support in a divorce agreement, any attempt to waive child support is usually prohibited. This is because parents have a duty to support their children, and child support is for the benefit of the child. As such, parents can't waive this support on the child's behalf. Also, child support is typically determined by state law, with many states having established child support guidelines.