Why Don’t My Escalating Expenses Impact my Child Support Payments?

Whether your child support payment agreement was negotiated on your own, by an attorney or ordered by a family court judge, it will be very difficult to change the agreement. Unfortunately for many people, although living expenses keep rising, child support obligations stay the same.

This is because if it was decided appropriately, the amount you are paying was based on what you earn, not what you spend. Therefore, unless you own your own business, you likely have little say-so when it comes to how much you earn. That is a fixed number – give or take based on job changes and salary raises.

Conversely, you are generally in control of what you spend. Your fixed expenses, a mortgage or rent, for example, are known quantities. While the price of gas and food fluctuates, you can make choices about how much you travel and what you eat. And, of course, when it comes to what you spend on discretionary items, you make those decisions all by yourself.

New Jersey laws put children first. The law bases child support on the earnings of both parents, not what they spend. If the courts were asked to take expenses into consideration, it’s likely there would be little left over for child support (especially because many families spend more than what they earn).

If you are considering divorce, or have a concern over child custody or support, contact the knowledgeable family lawyers at Posternock Apell, PC by calling 866-879-8855 for a free initial consultation about your case.