How is Child Support Calculated in New Jersey?
Issues involving children such as child support and child custody follow certain guidelines set out by New Jersey statutes. However, it is important to understand that each case is considered individually based on the unique situation. Child support agreements are reached based on a combination of factors, including the figures given by a standardized formula, your child custody agreement, and other extenuating circumstances.
Today, our child support calculation attorneys will discuss how child support is calculated in New Jersey, what factors are considered, and how your child support agreement can potentially be modified.
Passaic County, NJ Child Support Calculation Attorneys Discuss Basic Calculation
The state of New Jersey offers a utility which co-parents can use to estimate their potential child custody payments. This “quick guide” is available here. The figures used in this calculation generally pertain to the number of children, the terms of your child custody agreement, and the gross income of each co-parent. Here are some interesting results which illustrate how different factors can impact your potential payment.
Let’s consider a family with 2 children where both co-parents are now single. Now let us suppose that the Custodial parent makes $1,000 per week pre-tax ($52,000 annually) and the non-custodial parent makes $2,000 per week pre-tax ($104,000 annually).
In a situation where the custodial parent has sole physical custody and the non-custodial parent has zero percent parenting time, the amount owed is estimated at $279 weekly, or $14,508 annually.
If, however, the same co-parents have a joint custody agreement where each parent has 50 percent parenting time, that figure is reduced to $128 weekly, or $6,656 annually. As you can see, a difference in child custody arrangement has led to a nearly $8,000 difference in owed child support.
Little Falls Child Support Agreement Lawyers Identify Factors in Determining Child Support
As mentioned above, your Little Falls child support agreement lawyer will be focusing on gross income and your child custody agreement to determine a fair figure going into your legal proceedings. In reality, the calculations are rarely so simple. The factors which may play a major or minor role in your child custody calculations include:
- Income of each co-parent
- Child custody agreement terms
- The number of children involved in your child support agreement
- How marital assets were divided through equitable distribution during divorce
- The age of each child
- Any existing child support orders where either co-parent is currently paying or receiving child support
- The marital status of each co-parent
- Special needs of the child including healthcare, education, and more
- Health insurance considerations
- Government benefits being collected on behalf of the child
Can I Modify an Existing New Jersey Child Support Agreement?
It is possible to have a child support agreement modified with the help of a Passaic County child support attorney. Generally speaking, modifications or even early terminations may be sought when a major change of circumstance takes place to one or both parents. These “changes of circumstance” are most often a change to one of the factors listed in the previous section.
To explain this concept, let us consider the example discussed earlier with two co-parents in a joint child custody agreement, where the custodial parent made twice as much money. In this scenario, the custodial parent owed $128 weekly. If the custodial parent lost his or her job and was only able to find employment making $1,000 weekly, that may be grounds for a modification.
Given the new financial circumstances of the custodial parent, fair estimated payments would now be only $32 weekly. In order to successfully modify an active child custody agreement, co-parents must petition New Jersey family courts for a hearing and prove that a significant change in circumstance took place.
Contact our Woodland Park Child Support Calculation Attorneys Today
The child support agreement attorneys of The Montanari Law Group take pride in serving clients from Passaic County towns including Wayne, Woodland Park, Clifton, Little Falls, West Milford, Paterson, and across all of Northern New Jersey. Our experienced attorneys will work with you and your family to understand your unique needs and concerns so that we can offer highly personalized legal solutions. We approach divorce and family law legal disputes with a cooperative and communicative mindset, but will not hesitate to use aggressive litigation to protect your legal rights.
To learn more about how child support is calculated and how it may impact your family, please contact us online or call our Woodland Park, NJ offices today at (973) 233-4396 for a free and confidential consultation with a member of our qualified and experienced legal team.