The average amount of child support paid monthly is around $500. If you’ve just lost your job or receive a pay cut, this is a huge amount that you might not be able to pay. On the other hand, if you receive child support but find that it’s not enough to cover rising expenses, it can be extremely stressful.
The court can modify child support orders. However, there are some limitations regarding frequency. So, how often can child support be modified? Keep reading to find out.
Reasons to Request Child Support Modification
A child support and custody agreement are not permanently set in stone. Under certain circumstances, you can request a child support increase or decrease. The reasons relating to the child modification request must be justifiable.
The main reasons which call for the modification of child support are when there is a big financial change in the child’s needs or when there is a substantial change in the parent’s income.
As an obligor, if your earnings have severely decreased, you may request to lower child support. You may also request a decrease if you have several new children since the issuing of the original order.
As the parent or guardian who receives the finances on behalf of your child, you may be eligible to modify child support if the child’s financial needs have increased. Justifiable expenses would include education and medical expenses.
These are the only types of circumstances in which you can request a modification. If you give insignificant reasons to justify a child support decrease or increase you may be wasting a request that the court won’t grant. This is especially important in states that limit the frequency.
How Often Can You Modify Child Support?
Depending on the state you live in, there may be limits on how often you can request to modify child support. In some states, you may only request modifications every two years.
In North Carolina, you may potentially modify child support orders after three years of the original order or under extenuating circumstances.
If the other parent requests a modification, this does not mean that you are limited in making one yourself.
Tips to Modify Child Support
In order to modify child support, you need to request amendments from the same court that issued the original order. You may do it through the courts or both parents may agree to the amendments and present a new agreement for the judge to sign.
In most states, the modification is as simple as filing a change request with the court and stipulating a new amount. If the parties agree to the modification in writing, then the change will be made without a hearing.
However, if parents disagree on the modification, then they will need to present their arguments in court.
Seek Professional Help to Advise You on How Often Can Child Support be Modified
The best way of finding out how often can child support be modified is by seeking the counsel of a seasoned attorney with experience in child support within your state. Seeking a modification of child support is always made easier with the assistance of an attorney.
If you want to modify your child support order, we have an experienced team of Charlotte family law attorneys to assist you. Schedule a consultation today so that we can discuss your options.
Brandon double-majored in Political Science and Criminal Justice at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He earned his Juris Doctor from Barry University School of Law in Orlando, Florida. Throughout his career, Brandon has received numerous awards and recognition from his peers and agencies that rate attorneys. A few of these awards are from The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyer in 2014, The National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 Under 40 in 2014, Nation’s Top One Percent: National Association of Distinguished Counsel in 2015, Super Lawyers: Rising Stars in 2018 and 2019, and North Carolina Business Magazine: Legal Elite in 2019, among others.