The ability to create a child support agreement that meets everyone’s needs is always the best scenario when it comes to divorce, and a lot of the time couples can make this happen successfully. But what happens if you’re several years into the agreement and things change in your life, making the current agreement tough to abide by? There are a few life events that can create the need to change a child support order, and in Texas you are able to make changes depending on certain circumstances.
Income and Employment Changes
When a child support order is created, it is based off of current employment and income information. Every effort is made to draft an agreement that is affordable given your financial situation. Yet if something dramatically changes, you suddenly might not be able to afford your obligations. What if you get laid off and unemployment only covers a portion of your income? Or how about changing careers and only earning a fraction of what you once did? In the state of Texas, a loss of at least 25% of your income will be sufficient to require a change to your child support order.
Illness or Injury For Anyone Involved
Medical expenses can be tough to plan for, and if a hardship is created due to medical treatment for either you or your child, you can request a change in the child support structure. Sometimes the change will be made to allow for medical bills to be paid, while other situations call for a much longer timeframe. If you or your child becomes ill for a long period of time, a permanent change may be granted.
Growing Children Creates Growing Expense
If your child support order is created when your child is very young, it’s likely that the dollar amount specified is intended to provide everything the child needs at their age. However, as children grow, it naturally becomes more expensive to provide for them. More groceries need to be bought, clothes are more expensive, and extracurricular activities all come at a cost. Support orders can be modified over time to adjust for these rising costs.
How Do I Change My Child Support Order?
Assuming that one of the above situations applies to you, how do you actually get your order modified? Many people assume that they can make arrangements verbally and don’t feel the need to document any changes. This logic couldn’t be further from what is recommended, as you can too easily get trapped in a “he said she said” game.
Be sure to write out the new support order and have it signed by a judge. This way all parties are clear on what the new arrangements entail, and you have legal recourse should payments not be made.
If you need help with changing your child support order, contact Alexandra Geczi Family Law today. We put the needs of your family first to make sure you get the adequate amount of support you need.