How is child support determined in the state of New Jersey?

Child support in New Jersey is calculated using the NJ Child Support Guidelines. Our attorneys will gather information from you including the incomes of the parties, the parenting schedule, the cost of health care and daycare and input this information into the Guidelines, which will then generate an appropriate figure. The Guidelines calculation of child support is presumptively correct and must be used absent a different agreement between the parties.

Does child support exist without divorce?

New Jersey will allow a parent to file for custody and visitation rights without a legal divorce, so child support can be issued. Temporary custody must be decided prior to filing a petition for support. In this situation, both parents have an equal right to have the children live with them unless records show past abuse.

If a parent remarries, how is the new spouse’s income viewed for child support?

If the new spouse has an income, it is not considered for support, because he or she has no legal attachment to provide support to a child. The additional income may allow the supporting parent to spend less, so more money might be available for the monthly support payments.

What are the primary parts of a support order?

Social Security number of each child, the amount to be paid to each child, how frequent the payments will be made, and the manner of payment.

What about medical insurance for the children?

In New Jersey, this issue is typically addressed and taken care of in the Marital Settlement Agreement. It is important for the child or children to have coverage during the divorce process. A decision is made between the two parties, but it is the responsibility of the parent who can provide coverage due to his or her employment. The cost of the health insurance premiums for children is allocated between the parents on the NJ Child Support Guidelines.

Should support payment stop if visitation is being prevented?

No, unfortunately, each is a legal duty of its own. If a parent is deprived of visitation, he or she must still provide child support. Visitation and non-payment of support are separate issues.

How is support enforced in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, child support is usually enforced by having the payor spouse’s wages garnished, which immediately deducts any support payment from the supporter’s paycheck, before he or she receives it. The County Probation Department receives the payment and then distributes it to the custodial parent.

Is child support tax deductible?

The amount of support declared at the date of settlement is not considered income for the parent who receives it, therefore the support amount can not be deducted as an expense for federal income tax purposes.

Is medical insurance a part of Child Support?

The medical insurance for any minor child is to be awarded child support. It is not always the non-custodial parent that is responsible. Presently the court looks to the parent with the best plan at the lowest rate.

Can Child Support be modified in New Jersey?

New Jersey will allow for the modification of child support as long as a substantial change has occurred and the change is not something that has been previously addressed. The change will typically be associated with living arrangements and income.

If the paying spouse files for bankruptcy is he or she obligated to make support payments?

Yes. The federal law does not allow any child support or alimony payments to be discharged. Basically, the paying spouse is responsible for support for the time period stated in the order, unless modification of some sort is made.

Is college tuition a part of child support in New Jersey?

Each parent’s obligation to contribute to the college tuition expenses of the children is usually addressed in the marital settlement agreement. NJ courts recognize the right of children to have parents pay college tuition so long as the parents have an ability to do so. Although the NJ Child Support Guidelines do not apply to children attending college there may still be a child support award in place depending on all of the financial circumstances. The connection between college tuition expenses and the payment of child support for children attending college is complicated. Our attorneys will work cooperatively with you to understand your needs and the needs of your children to achieve the very best result for your family.