new jersey child support faq

When you have children and are used to relying on two incomes to meet your needs, getting divorced and separating your finances can be tough. That’s why many New Jersey divorce lawyers advocate for child support when presenting your case to the judge. Child support refers to payments from your ex-spouse that you can use to support the health and well-being of your children. But if you’re just starting to explore your options, you likely have a few questions about how child support works. Let’s take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions so you can better navigate the divorce process.

Is My Ex-Spouse Required to Pay for Child Support?

Under New Jersey law, both parents are required to financially support their children, even if only one parent has custody of the kids. That means the non-custodial parent will typically be required to pay child support to the custodial parent. Keep in mind that your ex-spouse may not have to pay child support or pay a significant amount if they’re experiencing joblessness or don’t make enough to adequately support themselves. 

How Is Child Support Determined?

The court will determine how much child support your ex-spouse is required to pay based on New Jersey’s legal guidelines. They’ll consider the income of both parents, the number of children you and your ex-spouse share, and the individual needs of each child. If your children have health conditions or require ongoing medical treatment, the court will take this into consideration when setting a fair amount.

What Happens if the Amount Awarded Isn’t Enough?

If you feel that the child support amount the judge sets is too low, you’ll want to speak with your attorney as soon as possible. They’ll guide you through the process of requesting an amended child support award. They’ll also represent your case to the judge using evidence like bills, financial statements, and more, to show just why you and your children need a larger amount.

How Long Will I Receive Child Support?

In most instances, you’ll receive child support for each child until they reach 19 years of age. There may be circumstances that cause child support to continue until your child’s 23rd birthday. But your New Jersey divorce lawyer will help you figure out the specifics and can interpret the child support award and agreement for you.

What Happens if My Ex-Spouse Refuses to Pay?

The non-custodial parent is legally required to pay child support. If they fail to do so, their wages may be garnished. Or if that’s not enough or their behavior doesn’t change, the state has the legal right to arrest them for failure to pay. If your ex-spouse isn’t paying their child support obligation, let your lawyer know immediately. 

Work With a New Jersey Divorce Lawyer

If you’ve decided that divorce is the best option for you and your children, schedule an appointment with a New Jersey divorce lawyer at Carvajal Law. Our experienced team will help you understand your options and can represent your case. Contact us today to see how we can help.

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