Do you need help modifying alimony or child support and aren’t sure where to turn? Unfortunately, you’re not alone, as many people experience this type of issue every year. Thankfully, about 29% of all custody cases are handled without third-party involvement using steps like those below.
You May Need a Substantial Change in Circumstance
When modifying alimony or child support, you need to make sure there is a reason for it. While it might be okay to modify it if both members agree, any sort of dispute will require what courts call a substantial change in circumstance. They typically define these aspects as a change in a person’s income or ability to make money or care for a child. These elements include a sudden and surprising loss of income by either parent, a decrease or increase in a parent’s income, health insurance changes or a lack of health insurance, and disability of either parent or the child or children involved.
You may also need to modify timesharing, which is the percentage of overnights a parent has with their children. You may need to change this balance if one parent gets a new job and cannot handle as much time or if other concerns develop. The court will always do what is suitable for the child’s well-being and emotional health, though, so personal preferences rarely count as good enough in their eyes.
Handling the Process Properly
When attempting to modify alimony or child support, you need to work with the court and use the proper legal channels to get the best results. For example, you need to work with an attorney to complete a child support modification form. This paperwork can include complex legal terms that may be hard to understand. Properly grasping them will help make this process smoother.
Just as importantly, you need to follow all rules and regulations and make any immediate payments based on changes. For example, child support orders are retroactive, meaning that if you file a petition after the financial situation changed, the court might only apply it to the date you filed. Therefore, you must get them handled ASAP to avoid any severe financial shortfalls when these situations occur.
As you can see, handling this common court situation requires some help and a skilled understanding of the law. Therefore, make sure you follow these rules and speak with a lawyer to minimize any issues.