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Old 17.05.2017, 19:56
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Child support in Switzerland

Can a father stop paying a mother child support for a kid who just turned 18, when the kid is still in an apprenticeship?

Just wondering on the legal perspective.

(Background - my friend got a letter from the courts stating that papi no longer wishes to pay for his son, who turned 18 this month. I suggested she get a lawyer... it was my understanding that legally, the non-residential parent pays until the kid is finished with his Ausbildung.)

What is your experience?

How long does the court battle take ?

Last edited by Rangatiranui; 18.05.2017 at 01:30.
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Old 17.05.2017, 19:58
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

Yes, he should pay until schooling is finished.

Tom
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:00
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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Yes, he should pay until schooling is finished.

Tom

And how do you enforce this?

How can he (or she - should it have been the mother that moved out - lets not be sexist here) "just decide" not to?
What legal backing does he have?
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:08
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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And how do you enforce this?

How can he (or she - should it have been the mother that moved out - lets not be sexist here) "just decide" not to?
What legal backing does he have?
He/she cannot, not until the child has finishe the education. Get a lawyer. Alternatively, maybe check with the KESB? The child has a legal right to support for the period of education, and canīt be stopped just because mom/dad no longer can be bothered
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:17
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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He/she cannot, not until the child has finishe the education. Get a lawyer. Alternatively, maybe check with the KESB? The child has a legal right to support for the period of education, and canīt be stopped just because mom/dad no longer can be bothered
What if mom or dad no longer can afford? What if money paid means that much less money for food on the table for mom or dad? Rent or alimony? Dental treatment or let mom or dadīs teeth go to ruin?
That list could go on for quite some time.
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:24
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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The child has a legal right to support for the period of education, and canīt be stopped just because mom/dad no longer can be bothered
However, it CAN be stopped due to lack of income.

I know of such a case, BUT it had to be done with lawyers and approved by the court, so NOT a unilateral decision.

Tom
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:24
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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What if mom or dad no longer can afford? What if money paid means that much less money for food on the table for mom or dad? Rent or alimony? Dental treatment or let mom or dadīs teeth go to ruin?
That list could go on for quite some time.
Mom and Dad should have thought of that before producing the kid.

Parents pay until end of first education. Matura is not that. Mentioned apprenticeship will be.

For Zurich there is "Alimentenbevorschussung" if Daddy turns funny. They help you out with money, tell you what to do and get Daddy to pay if necessary.
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:27
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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Mom and Dad should have thought of that before producing the kid.
Not always possible, shit happens.

You can't get blood from a stone.

But, you have to go through the courts, you can't just decide not to pay.

Tom
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Old 17.05.2017, 20:42
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

https://www.ch.ch/en/divorce-and-mai...contributions/
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Old 18.05.2017, 02:19
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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And how do you enforce this?
[..]What legal backing does he have?
I've never been in a similar position but these days I'd contact KESB, expecting them to do the heavy lifting if necessary.

In short the ex-husband/wife can't decide on her own to no longer pay. If s/he does, KESB will pay in his/her stead and go after the former OH for clawback, with full legal force if necessary. At no cost to the parent with custody, I believe(!).

As for legal basis: Civil code §276+277.

Also note §279. Because it's often difficult to take legal action within one's family, KESB is tasked to act on the respective person's behalf.
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Old 18.05.2017, 08:54
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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I've never been in a similar position but these days I'd contact KESB, expecting them to do the heavy lifting if necessary.

In short the ex-husband/wife can't decide on her own to no longer pay. If s/he does, KESB will pay in his/her stead and go after the former OH for clawback, with full legal force if necessary. At no cost to the parent with custody, I believe(!).

As for legal basis: Civil code §276+277.

Also note §279. Because it's often difficult to take legal action within one's family, KESB is tasked to act on the respective person's behalf.
Yes, it's quite clear in the link doropfiz provided:

"If maintenance is not paid

If your ex-husband or wife neglects their maintenance obligations:

• The cantons are required to provide a free service to help the person entitled to maintenance to recover the payments. In addition, all cantons will, under certain conditions, make advanced payments to tide you over until the amount is paid.
• In certain circumstances you can apply to the court for a debt recovery order to have the outstanding contribution taken directly from the salary of your ex-husband or wife and transferred to you.
• If you are owed maintenance payments you can initiate debt recovery proceedings at the credit agency of the person owing contributions.

You can also initiate criminal proceedings against the person who neglects their maintenance obligations even though they were in a position to pay maintenance."
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Old 18.05.2017, 18:49
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

Are you sure, you have understood the letter correctly? Just asking because as you said the child turned 18. Therefore, from a legal point of view the child is no longer a minor. As far as I know, the money goes no longer to the mother (who was never really the addressee she was only acting as legal guardian of the child). Given that the child at the age of 18 is no longer a child but an adult, now the money will no longer go to the mother but to the child directly.

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Old 18.05.2017, 19:44
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

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Are you sure, you have understood the letter correctly? Just asking because as you said the child turned 18. Therefore, from a legal point of view the child is no longer a minor. As far as I know, the money goes no longer to the mother (who was never really the addressee she was only acting as legal guardian of the child). Given that the child at the age of 18 is no longer a child but an adult, now the money will no longer go to the mother but to the child directly.

This is a good point.

The money is still due, for the child (even when this child is over 18) until the child completes his/her first post-school education.

When the child turns 18 and therefore, as you rightly say, no longer has the mother as guardian, this young adult child can ask the father to stop sending the maintenance payments to the mother, and instead send them directly to the young adult child's own bank account. In that case, the father must do so.

However, as I understand it, the father may not just decide to do so, of his own accord. The request must have come from the young adult child. It's worth asking this young adult child whether he/she has made such a request to the father.

If the mother is not using the maintenance money to provide for the child, then this is an excellent step to take.

However, as long as the mother is truly being a good steward of this money, and using it properly for the child's living costs, is generally considered a bad idea to change that. If the father is considering defaulting, he is less likely to succeed if he is dealing with the mother. Experience has shown me that the young adult child may be more susceptible to manipulation by a father using sob-stories to avoid fulfilling his responsibilities, than the mother would have been.

In at least one case I know, the father was not a wicked sort, but simply did not know what was in Swiss law, and in the specific divorce/maintenance agreement about his child. He was basing his ideas on the laws of another country, where 18 was the limit. Once he was shown the actual texts which applied to him and his child, with paragraph numbers, the bluster died down and he paid as he was legally bound to do.
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Old 24.05.2017, 13:55
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Re: Child support in Switzerland

He needs to cough up until the child has finished their "Erstausbildung", which can be an apprenticeship but would also apply to a degree. I remember reading somewhere that for degrees there is a cut-off at 25 but I'm not sure.

As mentioned before, the Gemeinde / Bezirk / whatever it is in your case can enforce payments but I believe the legal battle would be between the child (who is now an adult by law) and the father. I had a similar situation where I could have taken my father to court to force him to help pay for my degree but I preferred to work to support myself and only ask him for money when I needed it for things like going to the dentist. Depending on the degree course, working is not an option and it is stressful even if it is.

From the tone of your post, the father doesn't seem to be inclined to offer any support, so the child needs to decide if they want to take legal action. There have been several cases of this in Switzerland, specifically relating to those going to university. This is because the Swiss grants system assume that parents can be expected to pay up to 25% of their taxable income (that's the number for Canton St. Gallen, it probably varies) towards the education of their child before that child can even think of applying for a grant. Only if the child (young adult) can prove in court that it is not getting any support whatsoever from its parents and there is no way of changing this can it hope to get a grant. Maybe. Don't expect much though.
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