Everyone wants to be there for their children however they can, but the realities of life can make doing so difficult. In our modern times, people lose and change jobs frequently.
Abrupt changes in your finances make it hard to keep up with your obligations. You get so busy keeping up with your day-to-day needs that other bills can fall by the wayside. For many, a job loss makes it difficult to meet their child support responsibilities.
Luckily, courts do allow people to modify their child support payments. You might be eligible for an alteration after losing a job, but only if you meet certain conditions.
Answer these questions to see if your job loss qualifies you for a child support modification.
Did You Quit Your Job Willingly?
Perhaps you knew it was time for a change, and you quit your job to pursue another career or an artistic endeavor. This change might make you an overall happier person, but it may not qualify for a support alteration.
Courts are not sympathetic to those who follow their hearts. They expect you to meet your obligations, and they hold you responsible for any decisions you make. If you chose to quit your job or willingly took a lower-paying position, you are probably not eligible to for a child support change.
Were You Fired?
Courts expect you to stay responsible, and they will blame you for losing work. If you were fired or demoted for poor performance, you might be able to alter your child support payments, although you may need to provide sufficient evidence that your ongoing income reduction is not a willful act.
If you were fired unjustly, that is a different issue. You will need help from an attorney to prove that you were targeted out of prejudice, personal grievance, retaliation, etc. If you can convince the court that the firing or demotion was not your fault, you may be able to alter your support obligations.
Were You Laid Off?
A court may assume that a layoff is not your fault. When your company is forced to downsize, and the job loss or demotion is not your fault, this may increase your chances of receiving a modification.
How Easily Can You Secure New Work?
Courts will consider your entire work history and your marketability before altering your support payments. Your income reduction should be permanent or at least semi-permanent before requesting a modification.
If you’ve been at the same job for 30 years, and it will be difficult to enter a new field, this may be more likely to justify an alteration. However, if you have a history of easily changing jobs, or if you hold a degree in an in-demand field, the court is less likely to change your payments.
Get Help from an Attorney
Whenever you need to make a plea to the courts, regardless of the reason, you should seek legal counsel. They can help you craft a reasonable argument for child support alterations. Lawyers also help with keeping your documentation in order, and they can make sure you have the right paperwork to prove your case.
Our firm is there for those who need a change in their child support payments. If you need help, call us today at (410) 618-0863 or contact us online.