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What determines child support payment amounts in New Jersey?

On Behalf of | Jan 6, 2024 | Blog, Divorce

The intricacies of child support payments are an important aspect of a divorce or separation for parents in New Jersey. The state has established guidelines to determine child support payment amounts, considering various factors to ensure a fair and equitable distribution of financial responsibilities.

Familiarizing oneself with these factors can provide clarity and help parents plan for the financial well-being of their children.

1. Income of both parents

The primary factor influencing child support payment amounts in New Jersey is the income of both parents. The court assesses the gross income of each parent, considering wages, bonuses commissions, and other sources of income. This evaluation ensures that child support payments are proportionate to the financial capacities of both parents.

2. Child’s needs and expenses

The specific needs and expenses of the child play a key role in determining child support amounts. This includes factors such as education, health care, childcare and extracurricular activities. By accounting for the child’s unique requirements, the guidelines aim to ensure that financial contributions align with the child’s well-being and development.

3. Custody arrangements

The custody arrangement between parents is another important determinant. The parent with primary physical custody typically incurs more direct costs related to the child’s daily needs. Thus, the child support guidelines factor in the custodial arrangement to establish an equitable distribution of financial responsibilities. In doing so, the guidelines consider the time each parent spends with the child.

According to LendingTree, the average American parent who receives child support gets about $5,743 a year. However, amounts vary broadly based on geography and other variables. Understanding what determines how much child support a parent pays or receives leads to smoother proceedings and better outcomes for the child involved.