You may think a child support order is permanent – that once the court rules on the amount, that’s the end of the discussion. In reality, they can be changed in particular circumstances. But do you have the right proof needed to back up your request? Do you know what is needed to get a child support modification? You might not know how to win a child support modification case on your own, but getting the right help can make it possible.
If you are considering a request to modify your child support payments, it’s best to speak with an experienced attorney to see what your legal options are. At Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC, we’ll walk you through the request process and help you gather the necessary paperwork to show a modification is required. With the help of our Nashville child support lawyers, you will feel safe in knowing the proper documents have been submitted to give you the best chance possible of a successful change.
Can Child Support Be Modified in Tennessee?
Only in exceptional circumstances will the court consider increasing or decreasing the amount of child support payments. In Tennessee, child support modification is allowed as long the request will result in a change of 15 percent or more between the existing order and the suggested amount. Low-income families require a 7.5 percent difference.
Some examples include:
An increase or decrease in the parent’s finances, such as a job loss or getting married.
The child has become disabled.
The child is either emancipated or deceased.
Either parent has an additional child he/she is legally responsible for since the creation of the child support order.
Either the custodial or non-custodial parent has the right to request a review for the adjustment at any time. If there has been a review within two years of the request, the requesting party will need to provide information to the caseworker to show there has been a change before a new investigation can occur.
The Child Support Modification Process
Before the review begins, both you and the other parent will receive an Affidavit of Income and Expenses. You will need to show proof of the following:
Income and expense information
All child support orders
Your recent paycheck stubs as well as income tax returns
Health insurance and childcare costs for your child
Birth certificates of all the children you are legally responsible for
And, if applicable, proof of disability
It is essential both parties fill out this information since both parties’ incomes will be reviewed to determine whether an adjustment needs to occur. The review will either be conducted by the court or by the Tennessee Department of Human Services or your local child support office.
Remember, if you need to modify your child support, the sooner you file the modification, the better.
Contact a Child Support Attorney in Tennessee Today
Even if your request for a review is approved, you are not guaranteed a modification. That is up to the court or the state to decide. You want to make sure all relevant information is in the hands of the reviewers, so a decision falls in your favor. That’s why it’s essential to hire a child support attorney when requesting a modification to make sure you complete the paperwork correctly. Our Tennessee family law firm can assist you with any child support issues.
Now is the time to act. If you need to have your child support modified, it’s time to contact the Nashville family law attorneys at Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC for a free consultation. Now taking clients in Charlotte, Brentwood, Franklin, and other communities across Davidson and Williamson Counties.