I understand that there are guidelines for child support. What happens after two years to that support amount? Someone told me there are cost-of-living increases. Is this done automatically? What if there has been a change in income? Reduction of one, increase of another? Both incomes have increased? Does all child support go through probation?
Family Law Attorney
If child support has been set / confirmed in an Order of the court and that Order (or a subsequent Order) requires that the payments go thru the Probation Department, whether via wage garnishment or voluntary payment) every two years the Probation Department will adjust the support via a cost-of-living adjustment. If suport is not payable thru Probation litigants generally forgo the cost-of-living adjustment.
If there is a change of income child support will not be automatically adjusted. The only way to modify a previously set child support amount is to enter into a Consent Order (confirming an agreement) or by filing a Motion with the court.
Kenneth A. White, Esq.
New Jersey Family Law Attorney
The Answer provided was based on the limited information provided, and represents information based on the law in general, not a legal opinion that can be relied upon. Before a formal legal opinion can be offered I would need an opportunity to review all possible relevant facts and circumstances. You cannot rely on the advice of an attorney given over the internet. The exact facts of your sitaution, including facts which you have not mentioned in your question, may completely change the opinion that is being offered. Please be aware that the above comments are neither protected by attorney-client privilege, nor may the same be the basis for a malpractice lawsuit.
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
As other counsel pointed out, it really depends on whether or not your child support is payable through probation. If it is, the cost of living adjustments are done automatically. If not, you would have to ask the court to adjust it. To do this you would have to file a motion to amend child support.
Same goes for change of circumstances (lower/higher income). You have to ask the court to make this change. The Court will calculate child support according to the guidelines using current income of both parties.
This answer should not be construed as creating an attorney-client relationship, and is for informational purposes only, not legal advice.
Family Law Attorney
If child support is paid and monitored through probation there is usually a cost of living increase or review every two years. It should occur automatically. If it did not, you should contact your case worker at probation.
If there has been a change in circumstances you can revisit the child support amount. The change must me substantial. Otherwise, without the change, you can seek a review after three years.
Not all child support goes through probation. You have to request it.
The information provided is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. This information is designed for general information only. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your specific situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and emails. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.