Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.

New Jersey Child Support Payment Meetings

Divorce can be overwhelming, especially if you have children. However, even people who have had contentious divorces agree that they want what is best for their child. One of the ways to make sure that your child is cared for, whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, is by working out a proper child support agreement. The best way to do so is by attending New Jersey child support payment meetings with a skilled family law attorney by your side. Your lawyer can attempt to achieve a child support payment determination that works for you and your child.

What to Bring to the Initial Child Support Meeting

What a person should bring to a child support meeting actually depends on where and who a person's initial child support meeting is with. If a person is having an initial child support meeting with an attorney to help determine what their child support costs would be, the attorney is going to ask for financial documentation.

Some of the documents individuals may need to bring to New Jersey child support payment meetings are the person's last three pay stubs, their most recent W2, any mandatory union dues, any mandatory pension, childcare costs.

Financial documentation is important, especially, if a person has income from multiple sources. They are going to need information from the multiple sources of incomes so that a fair representation of what their income includes can be calculated, but for W2 wage earners, it is pretty simple: just the W2, their last three pay stubs and receipts from childcare that breaks down from HR regarding their health insurance policies, and what the difference in costs is.

Pertinent Information a Lawyer May Want to Know

At New Jersey child support payment meetings, an attorney might also ask questions about whether or not the person or their child receive settlement benefits from their ex-partner or ex-spouse, if the person receives or pays for any alimony, if they have a multiple family obligation, so if a person is paying a previous child support amount or if they have a new husband or wife and they have a child together, then how much the new husband or wife makes and the age of their child. All of this information is used calculate child support.

Attorneys will  also ask for the person's parenting plans so that they can get overnight information and from there, they can an attempt to calculate child support, see if there are any outstanding issues between determining income and whether or not a plenary hearing is necessary, but if a person has the initial child support meeting with the court, the court is going to send the person to a child support hearing officer or schedule them for a child support hearing officer.

Role of a Child Support Hearing Officer

Child support officers can be indispensable during New Jersey child support payment meetings. A child support hearing officer can help expeditiously resolving matters between the court for the establishment, the modification, or enforcement of child support. The initial application to the court will go to the child support hearing officer and they will make a determination using all the information from both parties.

Appealing a Child Support Officer’s Recommendation

If either party is in disagreement with what the child support hearing officer recommends, they are entitled to an immediate appeal to the presiding judge of the family part or a presiding judge assigned to hear these appeals. The judge will then hear the representations of those parties and see where the disagreement lies. Often times, one party says it is too high and one party says it is too low because raising a child is expensive. The court will decide whether or not the child support is fair and normally make a determination or re-calculate it based on the new information.

Behaviors to Avoid During Legal Proceedings for Child Support

The best way to look at going to family court is that it is in the chancery division, it is a court of equity, so they are going to look to be fair. While both parents might not think that the child support is fair (one might think it is not enough money while the other one thinks it is too much) you have to remember that the court is looking for the best interest of the child.

The court is not interested in hearing about how this is unfair to the person or if they are rude to the court, they are especially not going to appreciate that. The person has to remember that the court is looking for the best interest of the child and is not out to get one particular person and make them pay. If an individual wants more advice on how to conduct themselves during New Jersey child support payment meetings or needs help navigating the child support process, they should consult a qualified family lawyer that can help.