Divorces involving children are more common than they’ve ever been. One of the many by-products of divorces involving children is that one of the parents may have to pay monthly child support. Depending on your financial situation, you may be unable to afford your child support payments or simply think they’re unfairly high. If you fall into this boat and need help reducing your child support payments, a family lawyer can help.
How Can a Family Lawyer Help Me Decrease My Child Support Payments?
The main thing to remember about child support payments is that they’re to benefit the child. They aren’t meant to benefit your ex-wife or husband, meaning they only have to be sufficient to ensure the child is cared for. If you feel like these payments are too high or simply can’t afford them, a family lawyer or divorce lawyer can help, and here’s how:
Negotiate With the Lawyer of the Other Parent
Your first and easiest option for lowering your child support payments is to agree with your fellow parent. If the two of you can mutually agree to a lower payment, your lawyer can take the agreement to a judge and modify your payments. A divorce lawyer will also be better at handling negotiations.
However, if you aren’t on good speaking terms with the other parent or they refuse to agree to lower payments, you’ll have to move on to plan B.
Because people usually aren’t willing to take less money when they don’t have to, you’ll likely have to request to the court for a reduction in child support payments. While you can do this yourself, you’ll have much more success with a family lawyer.
In most cases, you’ll need a good reason to support the need for a payment reduction. Typically, there are three different avenues that your lawyer can pursue.
1) A change in income
If you recently got demoted or took on a new job where you’re getting paid less than before, you can typically get your child support payments reduced. The original payment plan was most likely based on your income and what the child needed to be supported. Therefore, if you’re not making as much money as before, you shouldn’t have to pay the same amount in child support.
2) A change in cost considerations
Another reason for a payment reduction is if you’re suddenly paying more for expenses than you previously were. However, this won’t apply if you move to a fancier apartment or get a new gym membership. Instead, increased costs typically apply to health insurance, child care, and tuition costs. Your family lawyer will help you know if you have a foot to stand on regarding cost considerations.
3) A change in the custody arrangement
Suppose custody changes occur where the parent paying child support starts taking on more financial responsibility to support the child. In that case, a judge may grant a reduction in child support payments.
4) A Change in Family Circumstances
If you have another child with your new spouse or partner, the court may grant a deviation to consdider the added children you have to provide support for
Roach and Bishop will Argue on Your Behalf
In each case listed above, there are special forms, documents, and steps to follow. If you aren’t familiar with the law, it’s easy to miss something and have your appeal thrown out without hearing it. A family lawyer can help you with this during the appeal when your case gets argued in court.
Which Family Lawyer to Contact For Assistance With My Child Support Payments
If you want to get your child support payments reduced, fight for custody, or have any other issues regarding child custody or divorce, contact us at Roach and Bishop. Our team of family and divorce lawyers understands how trying this time can be, and we’ll do everything in our power to assist you.