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Amendment to NJ Emancipation Statute

May 10th, 2017
NJ Emancipation Statute

What It Means for Child Support

A new New Jersey emancipation statute took effect on February 1, 2017 that applies to all child support orders issued prior to or after that effective date. This emancipation statute has the potential to dramatically affect when and how your child-support order will terminate.

Payor-Friendly Changes

This new emancipation statute provides more clarity regarding when child support ends and takes a more payor-friendly approach than that mandated earlier by New Jersey case law. Rather than the catch-all termination age of 23 that was used previously, new provisions have been made – including that, unless otherwise legally stipulated, child-support obligations terminate without court order when the child either marries, dies, or joins the military. Further, Child support automatically terminates when a child turns 19, unless certain conditions apply:

  • The court order specifies another termination age that does not extend beyond 23;
  • The court receives and accepts a written request for continued child support that is submitted by the custodial parent before the child turns 19;
  • The child is housed out of home through the Division of Child Protection.

There are also several circumstances in which a custodial parent, in response to a notice of proposed termination of child support, can submit a written request with appropriate documentation and a projected termination date for after the child turns 19:

  • The child is still in high school or another secondary program;
  • The child is a full-time student in a post-secondary education program; or
  • The child has an official physical or mental disability that existed prior to age 19 and that requires continued child support.

The new law also has various other stipulations that focus on the details of child support for both payor and payee. Importantly, the emancipation statute does not affect foreign support orders that originate in other jurisdictions. It’s likely that, if you pay child support in New Jersey, this new emancipation statute will specifically affect your obligations. Seek the advice of an experienced New Jersey family law attorney to better understand your rights.

If You Pay Child Support, Call 732 238-8686 for More Information Today

If you pay court-ordered child support in New Jersey, the laws have changed; your obligations may also have changed. Bowne Barry & Barry Attorneys at Law can explain your rights and help you implement your altered child-support obligations. Our family law attorneys have the experience, expertise, and skill to protect your rights and to help you stay compliant under New Jersey’s evolving child-support laws. For expert guidance, please contact or call the law office of Bowne Barry & Barry at 732 238-8686 today.