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Isaacson v. Isaacson

New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division
792 A.2d 525 (2002)


Facts

Lily Isaacson (plaintiff) and Joel Scott Isaacson (defendant) divorced in 1996 and entered into an agreement that Lily would have primary custody of their two girls, then ages seven and nine. In 1996, Joel’s income was $180,000, and Lily’s was zero, except for short-term alimony of $2,600 per month. At the time of the divorce, Joel agreed to pay $2,400 per month in total child support, plus unreimbursed medical expenses, summer camp costs, and $800 per month for 1996 and 1997 toward the girls’ private school tuition, with future tuition payments to be negotiated. Two years later, when her alimony was about to expire, Lily filed for modification of child support. At the time, Joel was making more than $550,000 per year, and Lily was working and making $50,000 per year. The trial court ordered support in the amount of $3,500 total per month, or $42,000 per year, without considering Lily’s income. The maximum gross family income provided for in the support guidelines was $225,000 per year, which would have resulted in child support of $34,000 per year for two children. The court considered the maturation of the children and the standard of living and economic circumstances of both parents in its award. The trial court rejected Lily’s argument that support should triple because Joel’s income tripled. The court maintained Joel’s responsibility for private school tuition at 79 percent, reasoning that he would be paying greater educational expenses as time went on. Both Lily and Joel appeal.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Carchman, J.)

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