New Jersey Child Support Lawyers
Parents must provide financial support to their children, regardless of whether the parents were legally married at the time the relationship ended. If a man was legally married to the mother, or if he has been determined to be the father by a paternity test, he must provide support.
Of all the tough issues you may need to deal with during a divorce and its aftermath, child support can be the most complex. If you are trying to get support from your former spouse—or facing child support demands you believe are unmanageable or excessive—you may need the assistance of a New Jersey child support lawyer with experience in these types of disputes.
Most states, including New Jersey, have established specific formulas for determining the appropriate amount of child support for various parents and situations. The payable amount determined by said formula is intended to contribute to the children’s care, education and safety.
Depending on how many children a person is responsible for, a percentage of net income—the amount that actually ends up in the person’s paycheck after taxes—will be owed to the custodial parent with whom the child or children live most of the time. If a child support amount is based on a parent’s income and then that income declines substantially, the issue may need to be resolved through negotiation with the custodial parent or, barring that, through further court action.
Furthermore, should the noncustodial parent make a very high income, that person may not necessarily have to pay the same percentage of their net income to the custodial parent as someone with a lower income would. New Jersey courts typically make decisions on child support based on how much the child needs to live comfortably, and not necessarily based on how much money the noncustodial parent could theoretically afford to provide. Speak with a NJ child support lawyer to learn more about the state laws regarding child support.
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In all family law cases involving children, the best interest of the child is the crucial factor considered by the courts. The issues that courts tend to look at include the medical, psychological or educational needs of the child; the income of the custodial parent; variations of parents’ income based on the season; or any other relevant or unusual circumstances.
The amount of income someone earns is often disputed. This is especially true for parents who are self-employed, have a lot of investment income, are paid by commission or in cash, whose income varies substantially on a seasonal basis, or who are compensated in non-traditional ways such as via stock options. It is also important to note that a prenuptial agreement cannot in any way modify the child support obligations that either spouse would have if the marriage ends in divorce.
The legal and financial questions raised by child support disputes are intricate. Add the emotional issues that arise in any sort of family law matter, and you have the makings of a highly complex situation.
Thankfully, a practiced New Jersey child support lawyer has the legal knowledge and experience to handle these issues and could aggressively defend your rights at every stage of your divorce proceedings. Contact your local attorney today to see what options are available to you.
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