A good parent always wants to be there for their children. In our society, money is a big part of this process. We need to provide for the children, keeping them fed, clothed, sheltered, and so on. When you are divorced, separated, or otherwise unmarried, child support may be your only option for helping out.
Child support should not be a burden. In most cases, it shouldn’t cost much more than it would if you were in the same home as the kids. Why, then, do some parents find it so difficult to keep up with payments?
If meeting your child support obligations is tough, it’s time to review the original order. Circumstances may have changed, or there could be a problem that’s been there from the start.
Here are some reasons your child support payments might be too high.
There Are Problems With the Original Ruling
Child support decisions are based on each parent’s income, the child’s needs, and the parents’ abilities to meet those needs.
Furthermore, each parent pays child support. One does so directly by having the kids in the home, buying their groceries, and so on. The other sends money to the first.
If you’ve always had a difficult time keeping up with child support, something is wrong. There was a miscalculation in the original order, a judge was biased against you, or something else went awry. Take your order to your attorney. They can help you break down each parent’s income, childcare expenses, and so on. If the numbers don’t add up, you can take this ruling back to court and request a modification.
Your Life Changed Significantly
Child support rulings are based on someone’s current situation and their immediate future. For instance, you may have a high-paying job with a strong potential for promotion. The court considers factors like these and rules accordingly.
These days, situations change more rapidly than ever. Permanent (or semi-permanent) life changes are grounds for a child support modification. Here are some examples.
A Major Shift in Finances
Losing your job or getting demoted will impact everything. It alters your entire budget, forcing you to make major cuts.
Similarly, you may have passive income through investments, stocks, and so on. Market crashes or trend changes can completely change your life.
If you no longer have the means you once did, you can request a payment alteration. Keep in mind, these financial shifts cannot be your fault. Getting fired or demoted for poor performance, for example, is not a good reason to modify your child support.
A New Child
Child support is based on how many children you have, regardless of who the other parent is. Therefore, if you have a new baby, your current child support payment is irrelevant.
A Change in Child Custody
Remember, whoever keeps the children pays child support by simply having them in the home. If you, therefore, have the children more often than before, you shouldn’t be paying the same amount of child support.
Changes in the Other Parent’s Life
Life changes apply to both parents. For instance, if the other parent has a better job than before, making far more money, then they should commutate more for child support.
Keep in mind, however, that in many of the above examples, the pendulum swings both ways. If you make less money, you can request to pay less in support. If you make far more money, however, the other parent could argue that you should be spending more.
Our firm is here to help with child support modifications, whether you need more from the other parent, or you need to pay less. For help, reach out to our team online, or call us at (916) 299-3936.