Can My Ex Ask For More In Child Support To Cover College

Can my ex ask for more in child support to cover college?

As you probably know, child support orders are enforced in our state in order to provide a child of separated parents with financial security, much as if their parents were living together and collectively providing for the family. But whether it’s because of divorce or because they were never married, some parents separate, leaving one parent responsible for paying child support, oftentimes to the custodial parent.

Because most states consider 18 to be the age in which a child becomes an adult, a lot of people assume that this is also the age when a child support order is terminated. While this might be the case in some states, it’s not the case here in New Jersey. As the New Jersey Department of Human Services explains, our state does not have a fixed age at which a support order stops. Knowing this, it may be easier to see why we posed the question we did in today’s post title.

Going to college is important in today’s day and age because it typically opens doors to more advanced careers and higher paying jobs. But can a spouse ask for more in child support to cover college expenses? The answer could very well be yes, depending on how the courts rule on a petition to modify an existing support order.

Unless a specific end date is listed for a child support order or the paying parent requests termination of the order, payments can continue. If the custodial parent agrees to help pay for the child’s education, they might be able to request a payment increase to account for this added expenditure.

This is a reality some New Jersey parents might not be prepared for, especially if they are under the assumption that the support order would automatically terminate once the child reached adulthood. If you’re facing a similar situation, then you may want to talk to a skilled lawyer who can explain your rights to you and what you will need to do to change your obligations.

Source: The New Jersey Department of Human Services, “Frequently Asked Questions,” Accessed Feb. 26, 2015


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