Talking About Child Support with Your Child

Child support payments are generally made by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent. The purpose of the payments is to ensure that the child maintains the same standard of living he had during the marriage, or would have had if the parents had been married. Child support is often one of the most contested parts of a divorce or custody case and even after the amount has been set, there is often drama with missed or late payments throughout the years.

If your child overhears you talking about child support and asks questions, here are some tips for how to respond. First, make sure your child is mature and intelligent enough to understand these complicated legal concepts. Most children under the age of 14 have no business learning anything about child support in your case. If your child is 14 or older, consider the following tips when talking with your child.

Do explain that child support is an amount set by the court as part of your divorce or custody case.

Do not tell your child how much child support is supposed to be paid.

Do explain that child support is meant to help one parent pay expenses.

Do not say that child support is for the child.

Do explain that you and your ex may not always agree, if your child overhears you arguing about child support.

Do not lay out all of your grievances with the other parent when talking to your child.

Do try to use child support to pay for reasonable family expenses if you are the parent receiving it.

Do not ask your child to tell the other parent child support is late, overdue, in the mail, or otherwise ask your child to intervene with the other parent about child support.

While it is fine for a child of appropriate age to know child support is being paid, it is not appropriate to get your child involved with any conflict involving child support.

DeTorres & DeGeorge handles divorce, custody, child support, property division and a variety of family law problems for our clients in New Jersey. Call us today to schedule an appointment to talk about your case.

Children & Divorce Guide
About DeTorres and DeGeorge Family Law

DeTorres and DeGeorge Family Law is a New Jersey based family law firm that has been helping New Jersey residents achieve the best possible results in their divorce for nearly 30 years. The DeTorres and DeGeorge Family Law team is always ready to fight for their clients’ rights – determined to help New Jersey families overcome legal challenges from start to finish. Our legal team, with over 65 years of combined experience, provides expert guidance on all family law and divorce-related matters, including custody and parenting time, alimony and child support, equitable distribution of assets, premarital agreements, post-divorce issues, executive compensation distribution, divorces for business owners, and divorce mediation. The firm has been recognized for its dedication and expertise in the industry by multiple local and national organizations, including Super Lawyers, Law Firm 500, and the American Institute of Family Law Attorneys. Rosanne DeTorres, Managing Partner, is one of 150 lawyers certified as a matrimonial law attorney.

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