State courts take child support obligations seriously. Any court order imposing such duties on you or your co-parent remains legally enforceable unless a court issues another order overruling it. If either of your circumstances change, you have the right to formally petition the court for an updated order that meets your child’s needs.
During modification proceedings, a minor omission or mistake may result in a court rejecting your request, making the help of a dedicated child support attorney essential. No matter your reason for pursuing a modification, retaining a Stamford child support modification lawyer can be a vital first step toward achieving a favorable resolution.
A child support modification petition is not meant to appeal an existing order. Therefore, it is not appropriate for anyone to seek a modification because they are unsatisfied with how a court’s previous ruling. Valid grounds for modifying a child support order require a “substantial change in circumstances” from the time of the initial order that make the current arrangement no longer in the child’s best interest.
Both the parent receiving support payments and the parent providing those payments can petition for a child support order modification. The petition may request an increase or decrease in support obligations depending on the circumstances. A parent who lost their job might request a decrease in support obligations, while a promotion might increase the amount a parent must pay toward child support.
As defined by Connecticut’s child support guidelines, a change in the calculated amount of weekly support of 15 percent in either direction is substantial enough to warrant a modification. Courts may “impute” income onto a parent who quits their job or is underemployed to reduce their support obligations, meaning the court may not accept any following modification petitions based on a change in income. A hardworking attorney in Stamford can help a parent identify the grounds needed for a child support modification.
Parents seeking a change in terms of their child support order must fill out and submit several forms with the Court Clerk’s Office to begin a modification petition. These forms can include a Motion for Modification, a financial affidavit, appearance form, and a fee waiver application. If one parent is filing for a modification by themselves, they must ask a marshal to serve copies of their motion to the non-filing party.
After processing the submitted paperwork, the court will schedule a hearing, during which that party must testify to their reasons for seeking a modification. If the judge agrees that a change is appropriate, they may grant the petition after the hearing. A seasoned Samford lawyer is ready to support a parent through a child support modification hearing.
Changing your court-ordered child support obligations is no simple task, especially if you are not intimately familiar with family court procedures and regulations. Even if you fill out the correct forms and submit them on time, you may have trouble convincing a court to grant you the change you want without support from knowledgeable legal counsel.
A Stamford child support modification lawyer will be your ally from the beginning to the end of your case. Contact our firm today to learn more.