Child support orders depend heavily on each parent’s income and other changeable circumstances, so what may have been a fair child support order at one time may, over the months or years, become no longer reasonable. For example, parents in Massachusetts may change jobs or take on a different role in their company. There also may be other changes, like the cost or even availability of health insurance. There also may be changes in how much time each parent is spending with the children, a factor that can also influence child support.
Under these sorts of circumstances, a parent may want to seek a child support modification. A modification is particularly helpful when the parent paying support has a lower income or higher expenses and thus can no longer easily afford his or her current child support order.
On the other hand, the parent receiving support may want to seek a modification if he or she knows about, for example, the other parent’s big promotion and feels, quite rightly, that the other parent can and should pay additional support.
For a parent in Springfield to get a modification, he or she will need to return to court in order to explain to the judge that there has been a significant change in circumstances since the last child support order was entered. The judge will consider this information along with the parent’s current financial status. The judge will also review the state Child Support Guidelines to see if a change is warranted.
While changes in support can sometimes be straightforward, many times they can involve complicated legal and financial matters that may be best resolved with the help of qualified professionals.