6. How is a child's maintenance (financial support) determined?
a. Types of claim for child maintenance
The parent with custody is entitled to claim for financial support for that child from the other parent, whether within divorce or judicial separation proceedings.
If, by virtue of the needs of the child, immediate maintenance for a child is required, an application for interim maintenance pending suit (i.e. a final settlement or hearing) can be made to the Court.
In such circumstances, the Court is empowered to make various interim financial orders, e.g. periodical payments, secured periodical payments, and a lump sum for a child at any time after the petition for divorce or separation has been filed and such an application is made.
The Court can also make other orders at different stages of the proceedings: (1) on or after the making of the divorce decree nisi; (2) within guardianship of minors proceedings and (3) within wardship proceedings .
b. Age until which provision for child maintenance lasts
According to section 10 of the Matrimonial Proceedings and Property Ordinance , Court orders for periodical payments, secured periodical payments and a lump sum, etc can be made in favour of a child who is below 18 years old.
However, the ordinance further stipulates that payments under an existing order can extend beyond 18 years old if the child is or will be attending an educational establishment or undergoing some form of training, or if there are special circumstances which justify it (such as the child being disabled) or that make it appropriate to do so.