After the divorce: So now that your teen is heading to college what is your ex legally required to pay?

So what’s the deal with college tuition?
Typically, your ex will be ordered to pay something towards tuition especially if you and your ex and your family members went to college. The in state tuition rate at the public college in your state is usually the benchmark. But for high income couples, obviously, that will not be the test because you can afford to pay more. In high income families it will be based on where you both went to school and where the child wants to go and where you can afford to jointly send the child. So what I’m saying is that an exception is usually made for high net worth individuals.
But for regular joe schmos like the rest of us, it’s usually the state tuition rate that is used. And you both will be assessed a proportionate share of that rate depending on your income. So, for example, in New York it would be the SUNY formula that is used to determine who pays what for tuition. Obviously if your child does not go to a state school, he or she will need loans to make up for the shortfall, except in those circumstances, as I said, where the court orders something other than the typical SUNY formula for college tuition purposes. I know that in the First Department in New York, it’s not even a choice. That is the law. SUNY formula will be used. Other Departments in New York makes it more of an option than an obligation.
What happens if your spouse does not pay when the time comes? Take them back to court and get a court order to garnish their salaries or what have you. A parent can’t just ignore the court’s order. If, at the time college rolls around, the parent is somehow out of work or unable to pay their proportionate share, that is an issue, obviously. Then maybe we can get them to co-sign a loan, or do something, to make up for their obligation to help with college tuition….
Here in Texas (you may have heard by now that I “ran off” to San Antonio a few months back?) I am not exactly sure what the law is on this. I know nothing about Texas law. And I definitely haven’t really been focusing on family law here. (I’m studying international law here in San Antonio, so I can get out of the divorce business and do something more “acceptable” with my life and career so that people won’t blame me when their marriages crater). So I don’t really know what they do here in Texas.  But I suspect it is a similar situation…. Speaking of Texas…well, maybe I will keep what I was going to say to myself. Here in Texas, I’ve learned that one has to be careful what one blogs about. I mean, not to generalize about Texas and Texans. There are good people in Texas. And a ton of cute guys. (One in particular I think is so cute I just want to scoop him up and run off with him to a tropical island 🙂 ) And you can’t beat the weather. But, boy, there are some people in Texas who are scaaaaaary. Girrrrl……I could tell you stories. You definitely have to watch your back in Texas in a way I never had to in New York, especially when you go around having crushes on cute Texan cowboys who are “out of your league.” Watch out, girl!
Oops. I digressed into my stream of consciousness again….Back to the tuition issue….As far as their tuition issues post divorce? I don’t have a clue about Texas family law as I said.  But I suspect it is similar to what it is in New York, though I would have to do some research to confirm that, and I frankly don’t have the time right now cause I’m working on a paper.  But yea, typically, college tuition is shared proportionately between parents after a divorce and there will be some sort of formulaic approach to figuring out who pays what.
Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/3891175561/sizes/m/in/photostream/