Support Payments After a Divorce in New Jersey

When couples are together for a long time, they intertwine their lives in many ways. This may be through their finances and assets as well as having children together. This makes divorce difficult, as it requires the spouses to separate their lives from one another. Often times, spouses may be required to make court-ordered support payments to the other spouse. This can include spousal support and child support. Through these payments, one spouse is able to financially support the other party until they reach a point where they can support themselves.

Spousal Support

Couples who are married for a long time often combine their finances and assets as one. In doing so, this may create a family situation in which they have a single income. This means one spouse may financially support the family while the other is the caretaker of the home and children. In these situations, one spouse may be completely dependent on the other for financial support. Because of this, the dependent spouse is often left in an unfair financial situation when they divorce, as they do not have an income of their own.

When one spouse is dependent on the other, it may require the independent spouse to provide them with support payments. This is known as spousal support or alimony. In the state of New Jersey, there are different types of alimony a couple may be required to pay depending on the circumstances surrounding their marriage and divorce. This can include open durational alimony, limited duration alimony, rehabilitative alimony, and reimbursement alimony.

Child Support

Couples who have children together must determine child support payments. This type of payments exists so a child is provided with the same standard of living they were accustomed to before their parents were divorced. When a child’s custodial parent is determined, they are given a great financial responsibility to their child. This requires them to provide the child with a home, clothes, food, an education, and more. These expenses can often become overwhelming for one parent to handle on their own. This is why the non-custodial parent is required to make support payments to the other spouse to balance out the cost of living between the two of them. This ensures both parents financially assist their child during their upbringing.

These payments are required to be made by a parent until their child is independent and can support themselves. This generally happens when they reach the age of emancipation. In the state of New Jersey, this designated age is 19 years old. However, there are circumstances under which a court may make exceptions to this. In some cases, a court may require payments to be extended. This may be if a child decides to pursue higher education and needs financial assistance as they do so. In these situations, support may be extended until the child finishes their education and can support themselves. In order to terminate child support payments, a parent is required to petition the court to prove emancipation. If the court agrees, the payments can end.

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