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The courts will generally consider the choices or the thoughts of a teenager who is about 14 years old or older. The court is supposed to consider the child’s input as one of the factors set forth under the law, but that is not the overriding factor. Unfortunately, children can be brainwashed and manipulated into expressing a particular preference for one parent, when in fact living with that parent would not be in their best interest.
Judges have the discretion to determine whether or not they will bring a child into their chambers for an interview. It’s very common for kids to be much more candid when they are in the confines of a judge’s chambers than in front of their parents. These interviews lessen the stress on a child than speaking in front of their parents and hopefully assist the judge to secure unbiased answers.
In New Jersey, determinations of child support are based upon the child support guidelines which are set by the state. There is a computer-based formula in which information is entered, including each party’s income, number of overnights with the child, costs for healthcare, and costs for daycare. This formula generates an amount of child support that must be paid and is formally used in almost every case. It is set for a combined maximum income of about $187,000. However, there are high-income families which fall above the guidelines. In those cases, the court will evaluate the actual needs of the children and determine how much support above the guidelines should be paid. It is important that the children should share in the good fortune and benefits that belongs to their parents.
When dealing with a high-income family, the court will award child support above and beyond what is set in the guidelines. However, it can’t be extreme. In one of the more famous child support cases in New Jersey involving Michael Strahan (former New York Giant and the guy who is on every single TV show on ABC), the court awarded a tremendous amount of child support to his ex-wife. The appellate division ultimately overruled that decision, claiming that while Michael does very well and his children should be properly taken care of, they don’t need to be spoiled rotten, especially since the excess child support would only provide excess benefits to the other parent.
For more information on Parenting Time Arrangement In New Jersey, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (855) 208-3650 today.