Once child support is written into a divorce settlement, it may seem as though it is set in stone. Yet, that is not the case. There are circumstances in life that may occur that requires a change in the amount of child support paid every month. Child support modification allows parents to alter the amount of child support ordered for several reasons. The income of the parent paying child support may change, making them unable to pay the court-ordered amount of child support. Whether parents become incarcerated, lose their job, get a promotion or demotion, the change in gross income could constitute a change in the child support amount.
Children may have changes in life circumstances as well. If the child has increased long-term medical expenses, such as if the child becomes disabled or is diagnosed with a condition, the child support amount can be modified so that both parents are equally responsible for these expenses.
Other reasons to modify a child support order include the following:
- A child needs to be added or removed from the order, such as if the child exceeds the age for child support or changes custody
- Medical support needs to be removed from the order if a child receives less attention than when the child support amount was assigned
- The child needs support beyond the set time period given
Child support can only be modified every three years. Furthermore, if child support is set to expire within six months, a child modification petition will not be reviewed.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.