Can’t Afford Child Support? Consider a Child Support Modification
While a divorce intends to separate two individuals who were once together, the process isn’t as simple as saying goodbye forever. If there is a child involved in the family, the equation becomes more complicated. When parents decide to separate, the noncustodial parent is still expected to pay a specific amount of money to help support the child. This is because divorce does not separate a parent from the child completely, and that parent is still expected to take responsibility for their child.
If a parent is not physically living with a child, they are typically expected to pay for child support instead. Child support is the periodic payment of money that a parent provides for the spouse that is in custody of the child. Paying child support is the noncustodial parent’s way of living up to their responsibilities as a parent. While most child support agreements are made to be permanent, situations may arise that prevents an individual from paying child support. When these circumstances occur, it may be helpful to consider a child support modification.
What Is a Child Support Modification?
A child support modification can increase or decrease the child support payment amount that was previously decided by a judge. Child support modifications occur because of substantial changes in finances or income. In order for a child support modification to be successful, the parent who wants to change the order must prove that there has been a significant change in circumstances.
Reasons For a Child Support Modification
There are many reasons why a parent may pursue child support modification. These reasons include:
- Loss of a job
- Change in income
- Another child from a different relationship
- Cost of living adjustment clauses
Benefits of a Child Support Modification
Failure to pay child support can have devastating consequences for a parent. They may face penalties such as wage garnishment, tax refund seizures, suspension of driver’s license, and more. If a person is struggling to fulfill their child support expectations, a child support modification can help ease their financial burdens. A person can even be incarcerated for failing to pay child support under certain circumstances.
How To Obtain a Child Support Modification
To obtain a child support modification, a parent must file a Supplemental Petition to Modify Child Support. After the petition is filed, the two parties must disclose their financial information to each other. If mediation is unsuccessful, the case will go to trial. Ultimately, the Florida courts will rule on the decision that is in the best interest of the child.
Struggling to Make Child Support Payments?
If child support modifications are on your radar, we warn that it is not a quick and easy process. To ensure that your case goes as smoothly as possible, it is essential that you consult a family law attorney as soon as possible. With the help of a skilled lawyer, you will be able to present your case in the most favorable way possible to the judge. If you are committed to modifying your child support order, our team at Baginski, Brandt & Brandt can help. To schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Port St. Lucie child support lawyers, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 772-466-0707 today.