Many single parents in New Jersey may be concerned about how child support interacts with public assistance, especially if their financial situation has changed for the worse. When one parent was previously financially reliant on the other’s income, that parent may find themselves seeking public assistance after the divorce. If a single parent does apply for public benefits, the government is likely to seek more information about their child support arrangement with the other parent.
If child support has been ordered but is not being paid or if no child support order exists at all, the government itself can take it into its own hands to pursue the non-custodial parent for child support. This action would serve to defray the expenses for public assistance from the government itself. State and federal governments across the country define child support as a matter of general public interest and public policy. When parents do not receive child support from the other parent of their child, the state must fill in the gaps. These kinds of benefits include daycare assistance, food stamps, social housing or financial assistance.
Sometimes, a parent may seek to file for public assistance before their divorce is finalized. However, it can be difficult to receive approval for government benefits if a person is still married to someone else with too high of an income to be approved for those social services. A legal separation agreement before the divorce and child support order are in place can help to ease the process before the divorce is finalized.
Struggling single parents may need help in order to ensure that their children’s needs, including medical and educational support, are taken care of. A family law attorney might be able to help them obtain a child support order, based on the income of the parents, to help ensure that one’s children have the financial assistance they need.