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5 situations that may trigger child support modification

Child support is critical for families all across Virginia. Whether you pay it or receive it, you should understand that child support makes it possible for a child to get the care and support he or she needs.

Over time, these needs can and do change, as do the financial capabilities of parents. When these changes occur, it may be necessary to revisit child support orders and potentially secure a modification. Below are five common events that could prompt modification in Virginia.

  1. Job change: If a parent loses a job, gets a new job or receives a significant pay raise or cut, orders for support may be altered to reflect the parent's change in financial resources.
  2. Change in child's medical needs: If a child gets very sick or injured, or if a serious condition improves dramatically, his or her medical needs -- and expenses -- will likely change as well. Child support can be increased or decreased to cover these changes.
  3. Change in custody arrangements: Child support is calculated based on physical custody. If this arrangement is altered significantly, child support orders can change as well.
  4. Emancipation, marriage or death: Support can be stopped if a child is emancipated, turns 18 (or 20, in some cases) or gets married. If a parent or the child passes away, support will be terminated.
  5. It has been three years since the original order was secured: Child support orders can be reviewed every 36 months. In some (but not all) cases, this review is automatic.

As you can see, modification is certainly feasible, as long as significant changes have occurred.

If you have questions or concerns about child support orders and modification, it can be crucial that you consult a family law attorney sooner, rather than later. Addressing support order problems can prove to be critical for you, your financial resources and the well-being of your child.

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Alexandria, VA 22314

Phone: 703-650-0367
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