You know your spouse is driving a newer and fancier car. You see them behind the wheel at every child exchange. You learn from friends how they boast about the significant salary bump that came with a job promotion.
While all this is going on, you still experience some financial struggles raising your child as you have primary custody. Although you have always received child support payments since the divorce three years ago, the amount has not changed. It has not budged. From your superficial findings, you suspect that your former partner is making a lot more money now. With that, it is time to pursue modifications to child support payments.
When life changes surface, time to revisit
Like your marriage to your former spouse, a child support agreement is not necessarily permanent. It must periodically get revisited as matters in the lives of the parents and children change for better or for the worse. Adjustments must be made to better accommodate each parent as well as the children, especially the children. This situation falls under the umbrella of post-divorce modifications.
Here are the times you need to pursue child support modifications:
- A gain in income: A job promotion or switching jobs to a new company are scenarios that typically lead to significant pay hikes. If one parent has met with such good financial fortune, then the other parent deserves some of that through increased child support payments.
- Loss of income: This may come when one of the parents loses his or her job, and later accepts new employment at a lower pay rate.
- Changes in a child’s needs: As your child grows and changes, so do things in his or her life. Perhaps increased education expenses at a private school or college. Maybe school-related fees and recreational club costs increased. Do not forget medical expenses that come with adolescence.
- A permanent disability: Whether it is one of the parents or the child, a disability brings added expenses along with heartache and adjustments.
- Changes in parenting time: Sometimes, schedules change, calling for the children to stay more often with one parent than the other. Or maybe the children are old enough to express an opinion about which parent they prefer to stay with.
Child support modifications come into play when such scenarios surface.