No one likes to imagine what will happen when your child’s other parent passes away. If you are no longer with your child’s other parent, the death of the co-parent can raise concerns about child support. Whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, the death of a co-parent will likely cause emotional and financial suffering. Child custody is complicated, so when one parent dies it can lead to many questions. Can child support continue after death and who will make these payments? It becomes a quest to determine if the deceased parent had established a way to care for their children in case something like this happened.
Death of a Non-Custodial Parent: What to Do if a Co-Parent Paying Child Support Dies
Generally, the non-custodial one is the paying the child support. If the non-custodial parent passes away, there are steps the surviving parent must take. The first is to check if the deceased parent has a life insurance policy. If he or she does, then a call to the insurance company can verify whether the surviving parent or children are the beneficiaries. If the kids are the beneficiaries, then the insurance company can begin the process of collection on the child’s behalf.
If there is no life insurance policy in place, then the estate may cover any child support that is owed. Once an estate is liquidated, then payouts on debts are handled before any assets are distributed. The surviving parent must file a creditor’s claim in order to get the money that is owed.
Another route is to reach out to the Social Security Administration. If the deceased parent was employed for a good period of time, your children may be eligible for benefits. Claiming the benefits may require paperwork to be filed with the Jefferson County Court. Once everything is in place, Social Security will likely make the child support payments.
Why You Should Hire a Child Custody Attorney if a Co-Parent Passes Away
Obviously, the death of your child’s parent will be a tragic event for all involved. But, just because a parent dies, doesn’t mean the child support responsibility ends. It’s in the best interest of the child for the support to continue. If you are worried about how child support will be affected after the death of a parent, contact an expert child support attorney to review your case and make sure your children are supported.