Child Support FAQ

Who is responsible for child support payments?

 In general, both parents are responsible for child support payments. The amount of the child support payments will depend on the child’s custody, living arrangement, and the amount of parenting time each parent has with the child.

How long will I have to pay child support?

There is no set age where child support automatically terminates in New Jersey. If you wish to terminate child support payments, you must show that your child is self-sufficient, independent, and no longer needs financial support.

Can I get out of paying child support?

Since child support payments are meant for the health and welfare of your child, you cannot discharge them. You may be able to reduce or increase payments, however, under a limited set of circumstances.

Can I reduce my child support payments?

You may be able to reduce the amount of your child support payments upon a showing that major changes have occurred in your life that will prevent you from making the payment amount. You must file with the court and have a hearing similar to the first child support hearing where the initial order was given. Also, you can file for a hearing every three years.

What if my former spouse stops paying child support?

 If your spouse stops paying child support, you may have a few ways of enforcing the payments. Probation will get involved to enforce the order. This may include the garnishment of his or her wages, which means communication with their employer.

What if I need more child support to take care of our child?

 If you need more child support to care for your child, you may file with the court for an increase. You will have the burden of showing that major changes have occurred since the last order that require higher payments.