Can student loans be required to reduce parental college tuition obligations? 

When parents agree to share college costs as part of their divorce settlement, it can be at a time when their children are younger and college is still in the far-off future. 

But time marches on, and someday those same young children will be young adults getting ready for the next big step in life. As your child decides on which college or university to attend, it is time to look back at those college cost sharing agreements. Does your agreement obligate you to pay 20%, 50%, 80%, or even all of your child’s tuition?

Whatever the share, it’s natural to explore how to minimize costs. Grants and scholarships awarded to your child can help to bring down your child’s tuition bill. But even with a few breaks, college tuition, even at state colleges, can still be steep. So what about student loans? Can you ask your child to take out loans to help defray how much you and your former spouse must pay? Your property settlement agreement (PSA) might even include language that your child is required to apply for college loans. Is this kind of language enforceable by the courts?   

The answer to this last question is no, according to the recent New Jersey Appellate Division opinion in the matter of M.F.W. v. G.O., a case that found if co-parents have means to pay, then children can’t be forced to take out loans.
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High Net Worth Divorce: How Much Should Wealthy Parents Pay in Child Support?

How is child support calculated when you are a high net worth parent? What happens when parents disagree about the amount of support to be paid? And how do you keep contentious divorce matters like child support disputes private and away from prying eyes? Read more

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Preparing Your Kids For Your Second Marriage

preparing kids for second marriage

If you’re getting remarried, you may worry that your kids will have a hard time adjusting to your new spouse and step-siblings. To protect your children both emotionally and financially, it’s important to establish clear boundaries and expectations. Here are five steps to help you do that. Read more

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FREE Webinar: Overcoming Parental Alienation & Reconnecting With Your Kids

parental alienation

Has your coparent turned your child against you? Is your child refusing to see you because of what your ex has said? Parental alienation can have both devastating and lasting effects on parent-child relationships — but there are steps for repairing the damage that you can begin to take today. Read more

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How To Tell Your Adult Children About Your Divorce

Telling your kids you’re getting divorced is never easy — even when they’re adults.

Adult children, including those who are married themselves, can experience every bit the same emotional reaction to news of their parents’ divorce as a much younger child might. Parental divorce

can produce feelings of abandonment, sadness, anger, and be a trigger for adult children to question what was real in their childhood, even if your marital problems didn’t exist at the time.

Parents of younger children are advised to spend time planning the ideal way to talk about divorce with their children — but this same advice goes for divorcing parents of adult children. Preparing to break the news about your divorce? Here are some tips for how to discuss divorce with your adult children in a way that can help you all make a more positive adjustment. Read more

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How New Jersey’s New Gestational Carrier Law Works: 4 Case Studies

surrogacy-assisted-reproduction

Are you considering surrogacy as a way to start or expand your family?

In New Jersey, a recently passed law reverses the state’s decades-old ban on gestational carrier agreements, put in place in the aftermath of the infamous Baby M case. The new law outlines rules both intended parents and surrogates must follow for the contract to be considered valid.

Provisions of the new law includes: Read more

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5 Steps For Talking to Your Kids About Divorce

Not sure how to tell your kids that you’re getting a divorce? While it’s not a conversation anyone wants to have, following certain guidelines will help you break the news as gently and effectively as possible. Read more

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Co-Parenting Conflicts: How To Hold It Together When Discussing Your Kids

Do co-parenting conversations with your ex often end in a barrage of angry words, thoughts, and feelings? Do you feel that you and your former spouse are incapable of agreeing on even the weather? Consider this: what you’re arguing about isn’t the issue. Your emotional reactivity is. You can learn to be an effective co-parent by following this three-step process: Read more

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New Jersey’s New Rules for Child Custody Relocation Requests

talking to kids about divorce

Do your summer plans include relocating with your children to another part of New Jersey — or out of state? Strict court rules govern parental requests to relocate. And recently these rules have changed! 

Let’s understand the new standards parents who wish to move away must meet through the lens of one family’s story.  Read more

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5 Tips To Help You Bring Up Balanced Kids When You Parallel Parent

parallel parenting

You’re trying out parallel parenting techniques because nothing else worked. But are you worried this form of co-parenting will keep you from raising well-balanced children? Here are five tips to help you minimize conflict so your kids can live in peace. Read more

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