Three Times in Your Life When You May Need to Modify Your Original Divorce Agreement

During the divorce process, certain decisions are made, such as who will own which assets, and whether or not either spouse will need to make payments to the other. While the division of assets is permanent, court orders for support are typically modifiable depending on the different circumstances that may arise after divorce. When the divorcing couple has children together, the courts often order the noncustodial parent to make child support payments to the custodial parent. They can also order alimony payments, also known as spousal support, when one of the divorcing individuals is in a situation where it may be difficult for them to make ends meet without a portion of their ex’s income (for example, if the former wife was a homemaker and doesn’t have a job because she previously always relied on her husband to be the breadwinner).

The amounts set for support payments within a divorce agreement are typically calculated based on the previous year’s income. But we all know that with time, things change. The following are examples of situations in which it may be appropriate to ask the courts for a modification to your court order. Keep in mind that regardless of the situation, you do need the court’s approval to modify your divorce agreement. If you stop paying child support without an official modification, you can technically be held in contempt of court.

1. You or your ex have gained or lost a significant amount of income. 

If you lost your job and no longer have a steady stream of income, you may be able to receive a modification that will significantly lower the amount of support you have to pay. It could also be lowered if your job stays the same, but your ex gets a new job where they’re able to make significantly more money than they were making before.

If your spouse reports that you’ve gotten a new position or a significant raise at work, they can also request that you pay a higher amount. 

2. The noncustodial parent has more children in a subsequent relationship.

If you are the noncustodial parent and additional children are born to you with a new partner, you can request modification to lower the amount of child support that you are required to pay. The idea is that this will allow you to distribute the benefit of your income more evenly among all of your children.

3. Your children have gotten older.

There are more costs associated with teens than with younger children. They need money for extracurriculars, braces, and so much more. Courts are usually willing to bump up child support payments at this time so that the custodial and noncustodial parent bear the burden equally.

If you are in any of these situations, or another where you think it is appropriate to request a modification to your divorce agreement, contact KL Family Law. We have extensive experience working on this type of case and we’re eager to help you! Give us a call at (714) 372-2217.

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KL Family Law

At KL Family Law, we understand that your primary concern is the well-being of your children. We strive to offer tailored solutions for your family law needs and help you move forward through this difficult transition.

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