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An overview of child support statistics

Custodial parents in New Jersey who receive child support may find that family finances can be challenging when an obligor misses a payment. Family circumstances can be even more difficult if the support-owing individual fails to make any payments. Over time, the percentage of custodial parents not receiving the support payments due has remained somewhat consistent. However, the percentage of custodial parents receiving full payment has increased over a 20-year period, according to a 2014 report based on census statistics from 1993 to 2013.

The percentages of parents not receiving any support have varied from 22.8 percent to 29.2 percent over the period studied in the report. In 2013, 25.9 percent of custodial parents did not receive any support payments. Meanwhile, the percent of parents receiving all support payments due has ranged from 36.9 to 46.9, with 45.6 percent receiving the full amount in 2013.

Nearly 62 percent of custodial parents received one or more types of non-cash support in 2014. The majority of these parents were assisted through the non-custodial parents' provision of gifts for birthdays or other occasions. Approximately one-third received groceries. Clothing and similar items were provided in about 45 percent of these cases.

The level of dependence on child support can vary for a custodial parent. In 2014, approximately 25 percent of children lived with only one parent, and in more than 80 percent of these households, the custodial party was the mother. In 2013 cases involving full payment of support, that child support payment represented more than one-sixth of the income for the custodial parent. In low-income households, the full amount of support could represent as much as 70 percent of a custodial parent's income.

A parent dealing with financial difficulties because of an ex-spouse's failure to keep up with child support payments might find that legal assistance is necessary in enforcing a support order. It is typically not acceptable to deny parenting time to an ex-spouse because of child support issues.

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