Child support and contribution cases can be extremely complicated and extremely expensive, particularly if one parent is required to contribute toward college expenses. While not all states will require parents to pay for college, some do. In most cases, children who attend college have a higher likelihood of being successful. Americans with 4-year college degrees earned 98% more per hour on average than people without degrees.
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What is the NJ Law on College Expenses?
In New Jersey, parents have an obligation to contribute toward college expenses. The case Newburgh v. Arrigo, found that financially capable parents should contribute to the higher education of their children if their children are qualified students. Since this ruling, it has regularly been ordered by the Court that parents must split, in some fashion, their children’s college education after divorcing.
Factors in Determining Parental Contribution
The amount of contribution from both parents is determined by a number of factors, such as:
- Whether the parent, if still living with the child, would have contributed toward the costs of the requested higher education
- The effect of the background, values, and goals of the parent on the reasonableness of the expectation of the child for higher education
- The amount of contribution sought by the child
- The ability of the parent to pay the costs
- The relationship of the requested contribution to the kind of school or course of study sought by the child
- The financial resources of both parents
- The commitment to and aptitude for the requested education
- The financial means of the child
- The ability of the child to earn income during the school year or on vacation
- The availability of grants and loans
- The child’s relationship to the paying parent, including mutual affection and shared goals
- The responsiveness of the child to parental advice and guidance
- The relationship of the education requested to any prior training and to the overall long-range goals of the child
Role of the Parents
Both parents must contribute to their child’s higher education, but they are also required to talk about the educational decisions of their children and have the right be kept informed of those decisions. They must also be given the opportunity to be involved in all decisions regarding that education.
The court will determine the amount each parent must contribute after the child has exhausted all other possible financial resources such as loans and scholarships.
For Excellent Legal Help, Contact Us Today
If you need assistance navigating the complicated world of college expenses and contribution toward those expenses, contact our excellent New Jersey family law attorneys. We have dedicated our careers to the exclusive practice of family law, which means we are well-versed in this area. We have also been named a New Jersey Super Lawyers Rising Star for the past 2 years. If you’re in need of legal counsel, trust us with your case.
Contact (732) 810-0034 or fill out an online form to schedule a free consultation with child support lawyers in NJ today.