There may come a point in your life when you're no longer able to make child support payments as required by the court. If this happens, you need to take formal action, as opposed to making the decision to stop paying on your own.
Here are the most important steps to take if you require a child support modification:
- Don't wait any longer: The court expects you to pay your child support in full until they grant a modification. Remember, there is no way for the court to know your financial situation has changed unless you tell them.
- Ask the other parent for help: Explain your situation and let them know that you're going to file for a child support modification. They may agree to a change until you get back on your feet, improving the likelihood of the court following suit.
- Document your financial change: You must be able to show the court that your financial situation has changed to the point of not being able to make your payments in full. A good reason for this is a job loss, demotion at work or a serious illness that is keeping you from earning a living.
Once you take these steps, you can finish the process by requesting a child support modification with the court that issued the original order.
The second you have concerns about making your next child support payment is the second you should learn more about a modification. By taking immediate action, you're able to protect your finances and avoid a situation in which you miss a payment.