The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC

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Should child support orders change with your circumstances?

The end of a marriage does not guarantee the end of financial changes in your life. In fact, your financial circumstances could continue to change, even years after your divorce is final. In some cases, the changes are significant enough to impact your ability to pay child support, as ordered, or adequately care for your children on the amount of support you currently receive. 

Fortunately, California law allows for the modification of child support orders in certain situations. If your situation meets the requirements, you can walk through a legal process to have your current support amount either decreased or increased as needed.

Acceptable grounds for a support modification

According to California law, there are only certain circumstances that merit a modification to an existing child support order. They are as follows: 

  • The income of one or both parents has changed
  • One parent lost his or her job
  • One parent is in jail or prison
  • The supporting parent has a child from another relationship
  • Kids' needs have changed
  • The factors used to calculate child support have changed

In some cases, the parents may be able to come up with a suitable adjustment amount, which would then only require the signature of a judge. If the parents are unable to come to an agreement, one parent must file a motion in order to request a change. Even if you have a verbal agreement with the other parent, it is not effective until it is in writing and the judge signs.

If you are seeking changes to an existing child support order, you would be wise to learn how to protect your interests throughout the entire modification process and any complications that may arise. 

The factors that determine child support

When the original amount of child support is calculated, the following factors may impact the final amount:

  • The income of both parents
  • Which parent will have primary custody
  • Health issues of the kids
  • Other issues that may require special care 

The ultimate goal of child support is to protect the best interests of the children above all else. If you are unable to pay, however, a modification will allow you to still support your children as best you can with your current circumstances. When finances change, you do not have to skip payments or worry about how you will continue to pay, but you may find great benefit in learning more about your right to seek a modification.

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The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC
601 N. Parkcenter Drive
Santa Ana, CA 92705
Phone: (714) 541-5400
Fax: (714) 242-7416
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The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC
7755 Center Avenue
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Huntington Beach, CA 92647
Phone: (714) 541-5400
Fax: (714) 242-7416
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