What Is a Cost of Living Adjustment?
If your child support agreement is such that you are paying or receiving support through the Probation Division, then your child support agreement will be subject to what is known a “Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)”.
Following Court Rule 5:6B, all child support payments which are made through the Probation Division will automatically increase every two years in accordance with the assumed increase to the cost of living.
But how are Cost of Living Adjustments calculated, and can a COLA be contested? Let’s take a look.
Calculating an Ocean County Cost of Living Adjustment
Cost of Living Adjustments are based upon the estimated increase in the price of consumer goods as calculated by the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The CPI is a function of the United States Department of Labor, and calculates the prices paid by urban consumers for a wide variety of goods and services, relevant to specific metropolitan regions.
If you are paying child support through the Probation Division, then every two years you will receive a letter informing you of an impending Cost of Living Adjustment, and the calculated increase of your child support payments based upon the Consumer Price Index.
When you receive this notice, you have 30 days to contest this COLA increase to your child support payments given that certain factors are true.
Contesting a NJ Cost of Living Adjustment
If you have received a COLA notice in the mail, you have 30 days to contest this type of child support modification by filing a written objection with the Probation Division (Ocean County residents can obtain this information here). However, COLAs can only be contested if one of the following factors are true:
- You mistakenly received the COLA notice, and are not the obligor in the child support agreement mentioned
- The amount of child support you are paying mentioned in the COLA notice is incorrect
- Your child support agreement provides for alternative means or times for this type of child support modification
- Your income did not increase at the same rate quoted by the Consumer Price Index within the COLA notice
Of course, if any of the above are true, are you wish to contest a Cost of Living Adjustment to your child support agreement, having the counsel of an experienced Ocean County child support modification attorney on your side can be invaluable.
Your attorney will be able to thoroughly review your unique situation, help you to correctly file all of the necessary paperwork, and ensure that your financial needs and concerns are properly taken into account when it comes to your child support agreement.
Contact An Ocean County Child Support Modification Attorney Today
At Bronzino Law Firm, we have extensive experience helping clients with all manner of child support modification issues and Cost of Living Adjustments in towns across Ocean County and Monmouth County, including Toms River, Point Pleasant, Wall, Jackson, Howell, and Brick.
The smaller size of our law firm allows us to provide each of our clients with the attentive and effective legal counsel that they need and deserve while still charging fair and reasonable rates for our services. Attorney Peter Bronzino strongly believes that by listening closely to his client’s unique needs and concerns, and keeping them highly informed and involved in any legal matter, he can better work to achieve the types of resolutions which best meet those same needs and concerns, and protect the legal, financial, and parental futures of his clients.
To speak with Peter Bronzino and our experienced legal team today in a free and confidential consultation regarding any kind of child support modification issue or a Cost of Living Adjustment to your child support agreement, please contact us online, or through our Brick, NJ office at (732) 812-3102.