Law Lessons from BESTY L. KILGORE n/k/a BETSY L. OSWALD VS. LOUIS A. KILGORE, App. Div., A-3481-11T2, November 5, 2012:
When considering a request to establish child support, the court may impute income to a parent whose income cannot be determined. Tash v. Tash, 353 N.J. Super. 94, 99 (App. Div. 2002). Further, the court may impute income to a parent, where the parent has voluntarily become underemployed or unemployed without just cause. Caplan v. Caplan, 182 N.J. 250, 268 (2005).
When determining whether to impute income, the court must consider four factors: (1) “the employment status and earning capacity of the parent . . . if the family had remained intact;” (2) “the reason and intent for the voluntary underemployment or unemployment;” (3) “the availability of other assets that may be used to pay support;” and (4) “the ages of any children in the parent’s household and child-care alternatives.” Child Support Guidelines, Pressler & Verniero, Current N.J. Court Rules, Appendix IX-A(12) to R. 5:6A at 2505 (2012).
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