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Can New Jersey child support help pay for college costs?

On Behalf of | Nov 16, 2023 | FAMILY LAW - Child Support |

Parenting is a very expensive undertaking. Adults have to provide for all of a child’s basic needs until they are old enough to live independently. In some cases, families may continue making substantial financial contributions to a young adult’s life for many years after they technically become adults.

When a teenager goes on to attend college after graduating from high school, they often expect that their parents will help cover their expenses. Most college students can’t earn enough on their own to pay for college while also studying full-time. Trying to pay for college after a divorce can seem like a major financial challenge. Can child support potentially help a New Jersey parent cover college costs?

Yes, child support can continue through college

Although many states have very strict rules about ending child support when a young adult reaches the age of majority or finishes high school, New Jersey is a bit more generous. Parents can potentially have an obligation to pay support until a child turns 23 if they enroll in college.

That ongoing support can help cover tuition, secondary expenses like school textbooks and the other costs associated with higher education. Of course, what the New Jersey courts will order in support often pales in comparison to the actual cost of college. Many divorcing parents will find that the best-case scenario for supporting an aspiring college student will involve negotiating their own arrangement to more fully cover their expenses.

Ultimately, understanding the rules that apply to child support matters in New Jersey can help parents avoid unnecessary conflict and minimize the impact their divorce has on the future of their children.