College Contribution Your Rights Are Our Business

College Contributions After a Divorce

Divorce Lawyers Serving New Jersey Residents

According to the College Board, the average annual cost of tuition in 2014-2015 was $31,231 at private colleges, $9,139 for state residents at public colleges, and $22,958 for out-of-state residents attending public universities. The point is: College isn’t cheap. And, yet, according to Discover Student Loans, out of a survey of 1,000 parents, 77% indicated that they planned on helping their child pay for college.

Many parents still view it as their duty to help their child obtain a college degree. The big question divorced parents face as their children take the SAT and begin applying for college admittance is, “Who is responsible for paying for their kid’s college education?” To find out more about college contributions, speak with our New Jersey lawyers for honest counsel and customized solutions to your matter.

We can be reached via our online message form or by dialing (856) 512-1461.

The View of New Jersey Courts

New Jersey courts tend to view a college education as a necessity and, regardless of your personal beliefs, many judges require that you help pay for your children’s college costs, if it is within your ability to do so. If you and your spouse have both already agreed to help pay for your children’s college costs, divorce proceedings can continue on smoothly. However, more of than not, this area of divorce can become contentious, with spouses disagreeing on:

  • To what extent college costs should be covered
  • How these costs should be paid
  • How the court determines if you should help contribute

Before ordering you to contribute to your children’s college costs, the court will evaluate the following:

  • Whether you and your spouse would have contributed towards the costs if you still lived together
  • Your educational values and goals and the “reasonableness of the expectation” that your child attain a higher education
  • The amount sought by the child for the cost of higher education
  • The ability of parents to pay tuition costs
  • The amount sought by the child in accordance to the costs of the school he/she desires to get into
  • The financial resources of both parents
  • The child’s aptitude and commitment to receiving a college education
  • The financial resources of the child (including personal assets or assets available through a custodianship or trust)
  • The ability of the child to earn income during the school year/while on vacation
  • The availability of financial aid in the form of college grants and loans
  • The child’s relationship to the paying parent (this includes mutual affection, shared goals and his/her ability to respect the parent’s advice and guidance)
  • Whether the long-range goals of the child and his/her prior training corresponds with the type of education they seek

If you would like to learn more about this area of law and find out how much you could be requested to set aside for your children’s college education, contact our legal team at Burnham Douglass Attorneys at Law today! We will look out for you and your child’s best interests.

With an office conveniently located in Marlton, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including those in Atlantic County, Burlington County and Camden County. We also extend our legal services to areas including but not limited to the communities of Medford, Moorestown, Mt. Laurel, Princeton, and Voorhees.

For a free case evaluation, call our office at (856) 512-1461 or contact us online!

The Stories That Matter

See What Our Valued Clients Have to Say
  • I could not have been more pleased with the firm or our result.

    “From the first meeting with Michelle Douglass and Philip Burnham, I knew they were the skilled lawyers I needed. After a bad employment experience, I felt betrayed and hurt but Michelle, Phil, ...”

    - Michelle M.C.
  • Both Michelle and Phil made me feel like I was a family member they were representing.

    “This testimonial will be the most honest you have ever read. My journey is case was actually dismissed in summary judgment due to fact I had incompetent counsel previously. Michelle ...”

    - Robert K. Petroski
  • After meeting Michelle, she gave me the confidence I needed to fight for what I deserved.

    “When I first met Michelle, I had so many fears about filing a lawsuit. I was afraid of actually filing against Atlantic City Board of Education simply because what I had gone through was torture. I ...”

    - Maria Marino
  • I never knew compassion, value and honesty could exist in an attorney until I met Philip.

    “I'm hoping there's enough space to comment on my experience with Philip as he assisted me on a very personal matter... I was recommended by two different sources, so I hoped & prayed this would be my ...”

    - Dan
  • She was always very prompt in her follow-up and developed a winning strategy for me.

    “I am very grateful Mrs. Michelle J. Douglass took my case. You demonstrated to me great expertise. She was always very prompt in her follow-up and developed a winning strategy for me. Working with ...”

    - James Runyon
  • Michelle Douglass is a straight shooter and fights for your rights.

    “The firm handled my case in a dedicated and professional manner. Michelle Douglass is a straight shooter and fights for your rights. Her tenaciousness and no nonsense approach quickly set the tone and ...”

    - Dave Daniels
  • Phil's service exceeded my expectations and I found him to be more responsive and sensitive to my situation than the previous lawyer I had used.

    “Phil Burnham is an excellent divorce lawyer! Phil's service exceeded my expectations and I found him to be more responsive and sensitive to my situation than the previous lawyer I had used. He was ...”

    - Abby
  • Ms. Douglass always returned my calls promptly as if I were the most valuable client among the many she represents.

    “It has been a pleasure for the last couple of years working with Michelle Douglass and the entire 'My rights lawyers team'. Michelle's experience and legal knowledge on employee rights impressed me ...”

    - Heather
  • I was helped by Michelle every step of the way, with guidance and answers. She is remarkable and I love her.

    “My name is Joanne Craven. I have been a long time client of the firm and have become a personal friend with Michelle Douglass as a result. Just recently, they helped me through a very difficult time. ...”

    - Joanne Imperatore
  • Ms. Douglass, I got a feeling of genuine concern, unlike that of the prior attorneys I had spoken to.

    “I first met attorney Michelle Douglass in late fall of 2003. I had been to numerous attorneys trying to find one that was not only capable, but willing to take on such a challenge. When I presented my ...”

    - Kathy Jen

What Sets Our Firm Apart?

The Difference is Clear 
  • Care

    We approach each client with compassion, empathy and care.

  • Experience

    We have an in-depth understanding of the law and how it relates to your unique case.

  • Personal Attention

    We will provide you with the personal attention your case deserves.

  • Flexible

    We offer video, after hour and weekend appointments for your convenience. 

  • High-Quality Representation

    We deliver high-quality legal work because we handle select cases.

  • Dedication

    We have been serving the needs of our clients for over 30 years and are dedicated to your success.

Start Your Path with Caring Legal Support