If the court requires you to make child support payments, it's important that you do so in full and on time every month. You don't want to miss payments, as this can get you into all types of trouble.
But what happens if you are no longer able to afford your child support payments? Is there any way to pay less for the time being? A child support modification request may be a potential solution.
A child support modification can occur by agreement of the parties or by order of the court. Regardless of whether the parties agree or the court orders the child support modification, for the support amount to be enforceable, the court needs to approve the new amount.
Here are the basic steps to take if you need to request a child support modification:
- Take action today. Once you know that your financial circumstances have changed, such as the result of a job loss, you need to turn your attention to your child support payments. You shouldn't wait around and hope that things get better.
- Talk to the other parent about your difficulties. If this person understands what you are going through, he or she may agree to a child support modification for the time being. It will still require court approval, but having the other parent on your side can help your cause.
- Keep up with payments while you document your financial changes, such as a lack of money as the result of your unemployment.
- File the child support modification request with the appropriate family law court.
When you keep these basic steps in mind, you'll find it much easier to move through the process of requesting a child support modification. You won't know if the court agrees with you until you complete the necessary paperwork, so don't hesitate to take action. The sooner you do this the sooner you can get your life back on track.