There are many different changes in life that can happen after a divorce which may have an impact on child support payments. For both parents, knowing when to contact a child support lawyer to modify the existing child support payment is important.
While a general family law attorney can provide legal representation in these cases, working with a specialized child support lawyer will ensure all aspects of the modification are considered and that the courts will have the documentation needed to amend the initial child support order.
Is there a Limit?
It is always important to talk to a child support lawyer whenever the parent paying child support has a significant change in income. The courts will typically look at a modification if it will result in a change in the current amount ordered of at least $50 or 15% with the greater of the two being considered.
There is no way in Florida, as in most states, to limit the number of modifications that can occur as long as the child is a minor. This is important as sometimes people assume they can only have one modification to the original order, which is simply incorrect.
What Can Be Considered?
Income is not the only change that can be addressed by a child support lawyer. For example, if the parent paying child support starts to take on additional, regular parenting time of the children, a modification may be possible if the request would meet the minimum requirements.
In some cases, the needs of the child may change dramatically. Perhaps a stay at home Mom or Dad returns to work, which creates a need for the courts to consider the cost of daycare. The end of payment of alimony can also be used to modify child support as the parent paying alimony now has an increase in his or her income due to the stop in the alimony payments.
Talking to an attorney whenever either parent has a change in income levels, either positive or negative, or when there are changes in parenting time will be the first step in determining if a modification of child support is possible.
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