Bill Text - HB554 (2013)

Allowing parents to agree on college contributions.


Revision: May 28, 2013, midnight

HB 554 – VERSION ADOPTED BY BOTH BODIES

13Mar2013… 0484h

2013 SESSION

13-0772

05/01

HOUSE BILL 554

AN ACT allowing parents to agree on college contributions.

SPONSORS: Rep. Gargasz, Hills 27; Rep. Gile, Merr 27; Rep. Ford, Graf 3; Rep. Ladd, Graf 4; Sen. Stiles, Dist 24; Sen. Lasky, Dist 13

COMMITTEE: Children and Family Law

ANALYSIS

This bill allows parents to agree on contributions to college or other postsecondary education expenses and authorizes the court to approve and enforce such agreements.

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

13Mar2013… 0484h

13-0772

05/01

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Thirteen

AN ACT allowing parents to agree on college contributions.

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

1 Parental Rights ad Responsibilities; Support. Amend RSA 461-A:14, V to read as follows:

V. No child support order shall require a parent to contribute to an adult child’s college expenses or other educational expenses beyond the completion of high school, except as provided in RSA 461-A:21.

2 New Sections; Agreement on College Expenses. Amend RSA 461-A by inserting after section 20 the following new sections:

461-A:21 Agreement on College Expenses. Parents may agree to contribute to their child’s college expenses or other educational expenses beyond the completion of high school as part of a stipulated decree, signed by both parents and approved by the court. The agreed-on contribution may be made by one or both parents. The agreement may provide for contributions to an account to save for college, for the use of an asset, or for payment of educational expenses as incurred. Any such agreement shall specify the amount of the contribution, a percentage, or a formula to determine the amount of the contribution.

461-A:22 Modification of Agreements on College Expenses. Every agreement made under RSA¬†461-A:21 shall state whether the agreement either is modifiable or is not modifiable. To qualify as not modifiable, the agreement shall state a specific dollar amount to be contributed by either or both parents. If the parents’ agreement states that it is modifiable, the legal test for modification shall be a substantial change in circumstances that was not foreseeable when the agreement was signed.

461-A:23 Enforcement of Agreements on College Expenses. The court shall enforce any parental agreement on educational expenses that meets the requirements of RSA 461-A:21.

461-A:24 Mediation of Agreements on College Expenses. Before any court hearing to modify or enforce any agreement to contribute to college expenses, the parties shall participate in mediation, either privately contracted mediation or mediation under RSA 461-A:7.

3 Applicability. The requirements of RSA 461-A:21 as inserted by section 2 of this act shall not apply to parental agreements signed before the effective date of this act.

4 Effective Date. This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.