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How to Pay for College After a Divorce

College degrees are increasingly becoming an indispensable tool for young people looking to start a career. The need for a degree is only expected to grow over the next several years.

Unfortunately, college is also becoming extremely expensive. If you're going through a Little Rock divorce that involves children, you should seriously consider planning for college expense as part of your divorce settlement. Planning ahead can help prevent confusion and disagreements as your child grows older.

Experts recommend that divorcing parents consider the following tips when planning for college expenses:

  • Plan for custody: The income of the custodial parent plays a big role in qualifying for financial aid. Students are likely to get the best aid packages if the parent with the lowest income has primary child custody in the year before the child applies to college.
  • Agree to cooperate: Financial aid applications require financial information for both parents, even if only one has custody. The divorce decree should require both parents to cooperate when it comes time to fill out aid applications.
  • Plan for all expenses: Tuition isn't the only college expense. The divorce agreement should also take things like room and board, living expenses, books, college visits and prep courses into account.
  • Set limits: Considering how fast college costs are growing, it can be helpful to create predictability by setting limits on how much each parent will be expected to pay. For example, some parents choose to set a specific dollar amount, while others choose to limit themselves to four years of expenses.

By taking these steps during your divorce, you can help ensure that your children's future will be well-protected.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Divorce Questions: How is College Tuition Divided Among Exes?

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