Turner Measure To Require Annual $25 Child Support Surcharge Is Now Law

TRENTON � A measure sponsored by Senator Shirley K. Turner, which permits the Department of Human Services (DHS) to cover the cost of a $25 annual fee on child support payments, or require non-custodial parents to cover the cost, has been signed into law by Governor Jon Corzine. The DHS has indicated its intent to pay the fee with federal incentive dollars. According to DHS, there will be no additional cost to the State.

In October of 2005 the Federal Government began requiring families to pay an annual fee of $25 when the State collects at least $500 in child support payments.

�By nature, child support payments are designed to ensure that kids receive financial support from both parents,� said Senator Turner, D-Mercer. �While payment of the fee is mandatory, it would be unfair to call for single, custodial parents who are already working hard to raise their kids to cover the cost of child support. By stepping up and covering the cost of the fee, DHS is reaffirming its commitment to New Jersey�s families.�

Senator Turner�s legislation, S-1560, imposes a $25 annual fee for the collection of child support. The new law puts New Jersey in line with the Federal Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, which created the fee.

Under this new law, DHS� Division of Family Development will be responsible for charging and collecting the fee.

“Earlier this week the Senate Majority Office put out a release which failed to cite the DHS� commitment to pay the fee. Once we were made aware of the DHS� decision, we wanted to issue a release noting the change,” Senator Turner said.

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