During your divorce, the court may have considered many factors when determining the amount of child support you either pay or receive. In addition to your income, health and job skills, a judge may have based support amounts on the specific educational, medical and general care needs of your children.
However, these factors are unlikely to stay the same as your children grow and you and your ex-spouse move forward with your separate lives. In Connecticut, you may be able to modify your current support order if there has been a major, ongoing change in your family’s circumstances.
When might a change be possible?
Generally, the court may agree to change support amounts if you, your ex-spouse or your children have experienced a significant life change that makes the current order unworkable.
Which parent can request modification?
Either you or your ex-spouse can ask the court to increase or decrease child support amounts. Examples of reasons you may need to request an increase in payments you receive include:
- You are now earning much less
- Your spouse is now earning much more
- Your children have new medical or educational expenses
- You are no longer receiving financial assistance
On the other hand, you may need to request a decrease in the amount you pay in support if you have lost a job or income, have suffered a debilitating illness or injury, or if one or more of your children is now an independent adult.
What if you agree to changes?
You and your spouse may agree that support amounts should change. However, keep in mind that an informal agreement is not enough. To avoid potential conflicts and legal consequences down the road, you must seek court approval before increasing or decreasing payments.