Child support is an ongoing payment made by the non-custodial parent (the “NCP”) or payor, to the custodial parent (the “CT”) or payee. The payment is for the maintenance and well-being of the child or children.
Child support is financial support. Each state has their own Child Support Guidelines, but New Jersey believes that children should not be affected by the decision of their parents financially; just because children have either divorced parents or an out of wedlock birth, they should not be deprived of what other children of intact families are given financially.
Child support is very nuanced. There are items and expenses that many people believe are covered by child support, but they are not. The New Jersey Court Rules provide over a hundred pages of Guidelines which establish child support payments.
The non-custodial parent can decide whether to pay for extracurricular expenses which are not included in the base Guidelines. A New Jersey child support lawyer can explain these nuances to you, and help you navigate the child support process. Contact a capable divorce attorney who can strive to achieve an outcome that is best for you and your child.Child Support Cases in New Jersey
Child support cases arise frequently In New Jersey. There are always issues between the payee and the payor. Child support in New Jersey is no different from other states when it comes to involving the courts.
There is no real data that states New Jersey has a higher rate of involving the courts. New Jersey is among 38 other states and two U.S. Territories which use a specific economic model when determining how child support is determined.
That model is called the “Income Shares Model” and this premise states that the child(ren) should receive the same proportion of parental income that that child/children, would have received if the parents lived together. This goes on State tax because in an intact family, parents typically pull their money together to spend for the benefit of all household members. That is part of how child support is calculated.Under What Circumstances Does a Person Need to Pay Child Support?
Child support is an obligation for any individual who has had a child but no longer in a relationship with the other parent, or what they call “an intact family”.
Child support is a continuous duty for both parents. The children are entitled to share in the current income of both their parents because the right of child support belongs to the child. It does not travel to the custodial parent.
The children should not be the economic victims of divorce or an out of wedlock birth. A person might need to pay child support if they have a child. Just because a person does not have contact with the child, does not mean that he does not have an obligation to pay child support.Issues That Arise in Child Support Cases
Issues that typically arise between parents in New Jersey are over income difference, e.g., one stays at home and one works outside the home; or an employment gap when one parent has not been employed for a long time or underemployed involuntarily, which means that the court will actually impute income to them based on their education and a number of other factors.Legal Requirements Concerning Paying Child Support
The non-custodial parent is obligated to pay child support unless there has been an agreement by the parties to the contrary. Child support that goes unpaid (an arrears), never goes away. The arrears will have to be paid even after the child is emancipated and the continuing weekly child support obligation has expired.
The custodial parent can seek enforcement of this agreement out of court by going to the court for the enforcement and the establishment of the arrears. This way it is written down in a Court Order that can be enforced if the non-custodial parent fails to make child support payments and the obligation has been established with the Court. A New Jersey child support lawyer can ensure that the non-custodial parent upholds their obligation, and can take legal action if the parent does not fulfill that obligation.Child Support Paid Through Probation
When child support is established through the Court, the custodial parent can request that the child support be paid either directly from the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent or through Probation. If it is paid through Probation, the custodial parent has to pay a $6.00 fee to set up the account. Child support paid through Probation allows the Court to check if the payments are made when payments were made, and how much the arrears are, if any.
If a person has an out of court agreement and does not go through Probation, there is no real record as to when payments were made. Probation can actually enforce child support payments that go unpaid. Unpaid child support could lead to an arrest warrant, the immediate suspension of a driver’s license, voting license, or motorcycle license, passports can be taken by the Court, and the Court can require the immediate payment of past due support. There are strict enforcements of child support and there are ramifications if a person fails to pay it.Importance of an Attorney
The ramifications for not paying child support can be great. It affects a person’s credit, they can lose their driver’s, etcetera. Attorneys who are experienced in divorce and child support can establish, enforce, and monitor a person’s payments to make sure they are not overpaying.
The Court Rules that guide the modification of child support are extensive with a large appendix and are designed to guide the court in specific situations. Experienced family law attorneys have an understanding of how and when to file an application for modification of child support, which is difficult to navigate. Contact a New Jersey child support lawyer who can guide you through this process.