Modifying a Child Support Order

Joseph T. Kirshy, Esq.

Child support, whether you are paying or receiving, is bound to be modified at one point or another, especially if the children are young when the original Order is entered. At any point in time, a parent’s income can drastically increase or decrease, whether it is because of a new position or being laid off from their former employment, and it is important that the child support order reflects that change.  Child support is based on the income of the parent, so it makes sense that the one’s child support obligation should change when their income does.  Also, as time passes and children mature and grow, the expense associated with their care can also change significantly such as an increase or decrease in the childcare needed or when they become teenagers. 

Just like modifying a child custody order, the party requesting the modification needs to be able to demonstrate the existence of a “substantial and continuing” change of circumstances. As a rule of thumb, the Court usually looks for a change of 15% from the current order to meet the “substantial and continuing” threshold.

Many parents may find themselves in a position of desiring a change their child support amount, but also do not want to go through the aggravating process all over again. While this process can be difficult, an attorney can aid you in minimizing the burden and guiding you through a modification.  If you find yourself or a loved one are in need of modifying or enforcing a current order, and need the advice and counsel of an experienced attorney, please call OWENS & PERKINS at 480.630.2464 to schedule your free 30 minute consultation.

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