The Relationship Between Child Custody and Child Support

Caring and Providing for Your Child

New Jersey child support is financial support paid by one parent to another. Child support is meant to cover a wide range of costs of raising a child, including food, clothing, and medical insurance. Both parents have a duty to financially support their child, regardless of custody.

New Jersey child support guidelines rely on a number of factors to calculate basic child support. Parental gross income, custody, the parenting time division, and the specific needs of the child may be considered. Typically, the primary custodial parent receives the child support. This is the parent with whom the child lives (the parent with physical custody). This parent is responsible for the day-to-day care and custody of the child and thus carries the heaviest financial burden.

The percentage of time you spend with your child will be a major factor in calculating child support. The amount of support a child needs will be determined by the parental incomes and whether any other children require support as well. Once that base figure is calculated, the responsibility is divided according to the parenting time percentage. For example, if you have your child 90% of the time, you will need most of the child support amount. This doesn’t mean that you will need to pay the other parent a minimal amount of child support to reflect the time they spend with your child. It just means that your support amount may be reduced according to the parenting time division. If the parenting time ratio is more equal, the support amount will reflect that. Child support may be minimal if both parents have the child equal amounts of time and have similar incomes.

Child support isn’t entirely dependent on custody. You have a duty to financially provide for your child no matter your rights to spend time with or contact him or her. You may still have to pay child support even if your parental rights have been terminated. And you cannot refuse parenting time if the other parent fails to pay child support. You will have to take action to enforce your child support order, but this won’t affect custody.

Consult with an experienced New Jersey child custody attorney if you have questions about how parenting time can affect child support. It is important to ensure your child support order is sufficient to provide for the basic needs of your child. It is also very important that the support amount reflects each parent’s parenting time share and thus financial responsibility.

Do you need help with a child support or child custody case? Williams Law Group, LLC is here to help you make the best decisions for you and your family. Located in Union, New Jersey, Williams Law Group, LLC provides compassionate and dedicated legal services to Union, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Monmouth, and Middlesex counties, and the surrounding areas. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle divorce and family law, child custody, and child abuse/neglect cases. Call our office at (908) 810-1083, email us at, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation and ultimately get you connected with an experienced New Jersey divorce and child custody attorney.

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