Youth Justice: Child Support

Child Support and Child Custody are not related. You will not get custody of your child just because you pay support; you also won’t be denied custody just because you don’t.

Minors can file for and receive child support for their own children without adult help.

  • Minors can also be required to pay child support, even if they are still in high school.
  • But, since support is based off your income or capacity to earn income, most minors and high school students don’t have to pay.
  • The minor’s parents do not have to pay child support for their grandchildren.

SSI and other public benefits (cash assistance, food stamps) are not income for the purposes of support—you will never have to give part of these benefits away.

  • But, pretty much everything else you earn is income, including income you earn “under the table.”

For more on support for teen parents, go to