The Supreme Court of Italy published a judgement on Friday 14 August 2020. The Court ruled that a 35-year-old man was no longer legally entitled to financial support from his parents. The man was himself earning 20,000 euros through his work as a part-time music teacher. However, he still expected his parents to financially maintain him.

This situation could not arise in Scotland.

Many parents are, of course, prepared to regularly and consistently support their children financially with little consideration as to at what age that support should legally cease. It will often gradually decrease and then come to an end once their adult child is earning enough money through their own endeavours to afford to live.

However, conflict can sometimes arise. An example of this is when a couple have separated and their adult child heads off to university. One parent may be better placed to support their child financially than the other. In the event of any dispute between the parents or between the adult child and his or her parent(s) as to who should be funding them and/or how much should be paid, it is open to the adult child to make a claim against their parent.

It is well established in Scottish legislation that a parent has an obligation to aliment their child. For this purpose the law states that a "child" is a person under the age of 18 years. It is also stated that a "child" can be over the age of 18 and under the age of 25 years if they are reasonably and appropriately undergoing instruction at an educational establishment or training for employment or for a trade, profession or vocation.

With many students across the country now preparing to leave home for the first time and embark on their journeys into university, college or training, this is likely to be a current matter of concern in some families. Our specialist and experienced team of family law solicitors is located across Scotland and can assist either parents or adult children in relation to such matters.


Sarah Lilley