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When Can I Ask a Judge to Change My Child Support Payments?

Posted on in Child Support

DuPage County child support attorneys, child support paymentsDuring the lifetime of a child, circumstances can change greatly that may mean that the amount you pay or receive in child support should be altered to take these changes into account. This is called a “modification” of child support.

Illinois law provides circumstances that may allow parties to go to court for a change. However, keep in mind that because family law is centered on the best interests of the child, judges are generally able to find outside of what the statute says if it is in the child’s best interest. A qualified family law attorney can help you with the specifics of your case.

Getting into Court

Courts do not like to waste resources and they want to make sure that you have a good reason for trying to get child support modified before you can even go in front of a judge. If you are in the process of a divorce where there are children from the marriage, or this is your first attempt at trying to collect child support from a parent, then you are not seeking a modification of child support, but just establishing child support in the first place. That process is different than a modification. Modifications occur when there is already an order governing child support in place, but one party wants the amount either raised or lowered.

There are a few circumstances where the judge will allow parties into court to hear a petition for modification. Those circumstances are:

  • Three Years – Illinois law will allow parents to come before the court to modify child support if it has been at least three years since the last child support order was entered.

  • Significant Change in a Parent’s Income – If the parent paying child support has had a change that means his or her income is either significantly higher or significantly lower, the judge will usually allow a modification petition to go forward. This can be difficult for receiving parents because they may or may not know what the income is of the paying parent, or when there is a change. This circumstance is often used when the paying parent loses his or her job and therefore wants to lower the amount of child support he or she pays.

  • A Change in the Needs of the Child – Parents can go into court to modify a child support order when the child’s needs have changed. For example, if a child is diagnosed with an illness or has an accident, then a paying parent may be asked to contribute more for the additional care. However, a child’s needs can change in many ways and the court can use its discretion to decide whether the change has been significant enough to warrant a modification.

Let Us Assist You Today

If you are trying to get an adjustment to the amount that you pay or receive in child support each month, an experienced attorney can help answer your questions and assist you in this modification so you can get the best results. The dedicated DuPage County child support attorneys at Davi Law Group, LLC can help tell you what your obligations are and what you are entitled to under the law.


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