ADULT CHILDREN MAY NOT BE ENTITLED TO COLLEGE MONEY AS PART OF PARENTS’ DIVORCE

For more than 30 years divorcing parents in New Jersey have been required to contribute towards the cost of college for their children. However, in the recent ruling of Black v. Black the Court added a new twist. The case involved a mother who was requesting college money for her adult son who had a damaged relationship with his father. The father did not think he should have to pay for college if the son would not even speak to him. Without assigning blame for the broken relationship, the court ruled that “When an adult child takes this type of dismissive attitude towards the parent/child relationship, and instead continues to harbor endless resentment towards the parent with no good faith effort at rehabilitation or reconciliation, then the idea of the child simultaneously demanding college education contribution from the parent may be viewed by a court as fundamentally unfair and inequitable to the parent.” This consideration of fault in a college contribution case is a fundamental change in New Jersey divorce law.

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