It was around this time last year that we briefed you on major changes to New Jersey's child support laws. A year went by quickly…. as they so often do! Those changes to emancipation and termination took effect on February 1, 2017. Let's briefly review what you need to know: —
Q: What Does Emancipation Mean?
A: The Non-Custodial Parent is no longer obligated to provide child support or health insurance.
Q: When Does Child Support End?
A: Automatically On The Child's 19th Birthday
Q: Are There Exceptions?
A: Yes; when the custodial parent petitions the court and demonstrates that (1) the parties agreed to a different date in their divorce agreement, (2) the child marries, (3) the child enters the military, (4) the child dies, (5) the child has a diagnosed physical/mental disability recognized by a state or federal government authority (like Social Security), or, most commonly, (6) when the child is still enrolled in a secondary or post-secondary educational program (i.e. college or trade school) on a full-time basis.
Q: Is There An Age When Child Support Stops No Matter What?
A: Yes, At Age 23, HOWEVER, the custodial parent petitions the court for financial maintenance beyond age 23 (such as for a child with severe disabilities), but even then, it's no longer classified as child support.
Q: How Do I Request A Continuation of Support?
A: Two Ways: (1) Complete and File the Continuation of Support Request Form or (2) Contact An Attorney to Prepare a Motion for Emancipation.
— Those are obviously only the broad strokes. There's much more to discuss, and it's now more important than ever to prepare for child support future at the time of divorce when a matrimonial settlement agreement is drafted. We're here to help you navigate the ins and outs of emancipation and child support termination in New Jersey. Help is only a quick phone call or e-mail away. We'll walk you through the process, answer your questions, ascertain your goals and labor to achieve a best-case outcome given the facts of your case. If you have any questions regarding the determination of income for child support, or family court matters generally in New Jersey, please contact us online today or call (856) 546-1350 for a confidential consultation with one of our skilled family court lawyers. _____