Marie A. Gonzales - Page 9

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               In Farmilette v. Farmilette, 566 A.2d 835 (N.J. Super. Ct.              
          Ch. Div. 1989), the New Jersey Superior Court addressed whether              
          unallocated support orders are modifiable.  The court held that              
          they are.  The Farmilettes, formerly husband and wife, obtained a            
          divorce judgment, and Mr. Farmilette was ordered to pay $285 a               
          week to support his ex-wife and their two children.  Sometime                
          after one child became emancipated and the other child began                 
          living full time with Mr. Farmilette, the latter sought a                    
          reduction of his unallocated support obligation, retroactive to              
          the time of the emancipation and change of residency.  Before                
          deciding to what extent, if any, the support order should be                 
          modified, the court considered its authority to do so.  It                   
          pointed to a New Jersey statute prohibiting retroactive                      
          modifications of child support.9  The court reasoned, however,               
          that it "will not be so presumptuous as to assume the legislators            
          had in mind unallocated support orders which clearly are not                 
          included within the statute."  Id. at 835–836.  The court then               
          held unallocated support orders modifiable and agreed to review              

               9The New Jersey legislature has since made minor modifica-              
          tions to this statute.  In relevant part, the current version of             
          N.J. Stat. Ann. sec. 2A:17-56.23a (West Supp. 1999) provides that            
               No payment or installment of an order for child support                 
               * * * shall be retroactively modified by the court                      
               except with respect to the period during which there is                 
               a pending application for modification * * *                            

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