Child Support

In New Jersey, child support is often a major concern for parents when divorcing. The goal is that the children are properly cared for physically, emotionally and in a healthy manner. It does not matter which parent a child ultimately lives with, both parents, by law, are required to care for and meet the needs of the child.

New Jersey Courts use the New Jersey Child Support Guidelines to calculate the amount of child support one parent will have to pay to the other. However, the Court has discretion in calculating the final amount based upon several factors. Issues such as the ages of the children, the income of the parents, special needs, education costs and the child’s income or ability to earn income.

Frequently Asked New Jersey Child Support Questions

What is child support?

Child support is money paid from the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent used to support the children. The support is to cover a variety of expenses including housing, food and personal expenses.

How is child support calculated?

New Jersey has child support guidelines which are used by the courts and practitioners and the guidelines are based on the parent’s combined income.

Can the amount of child support be changed?

Yes. Once a child support obligation is established, should there be a change in circumstances, child support can be reviewed.

How long does child support last?

Child support lasts until a child is emancipated which is generally when a child graduates from college.

What happens if somebody does not pay child support?

Child support obligations are enforced by the court. There are various ways to collect money due to a child support order. A court can garnish ones wages, liquidate assets, order community service until paid, and in extreme circumstances, can jail the person who is not paying child support.

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