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Work with experienced legal counsel in modification of child support order

In our last post, we began speaking about the difficulties noncustodial parents may face in meeting their child support obligations. As we noted, sometimes significant changes and insurmountable difficulties in a parent’s life can interfere with obligations under a child support order. When this happens, the parent owing child support should seek help obtaining relief from the court.

Parents ordered to pay child support who are no longer able to make payments can request a modification of the child support order by two different means. One way is to go through the Friend of the Court Office. For parents who receive public assistance, child support orders are automatically reviewed every 36 months. Parents who aren’t on public assistance are able to request a review every 36 months, though. 

A second way to obtain modification of a child custody order is to file a motion to modify the child support order with the court.  In determining whether to grant a modification, the court will consider a variety of factors. Some possible factors that could lead to a modification are:

  • The child’s needs have decreased
  • The custodial parent has obtained access to dependant health care coverage
  • The custodial parent has begun receiving public assistance, unemployment compensation, workers’ compensation;
  • The initial order was based on factual errors

Parents who are unable to meet their child support obligations shouldn’t assume that they’ll be let off the hook. Being proactive is important in order to avoid legal consequences, and to ensure everything is done properly and with the approval of the court. Having an advocate in this process ensures that a noncustodial parent has the representation necessary to advocate for his or her interests before the court.

Sources:

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Modifying an Order, Accessed May 5, 2016.

Michigan Compiled Laws, Section 552.517

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Work with experienced legal counsel in modification of child support order | Peter A D'Angelo, Attorney at Law, PLC