Child support is a critical financial obligation that parents have to their children after a divorce or separation. It ensures that their basic needs, such as food, shelter, clothing, and medical expenses, are taken care of. In Illinois, child support is calculated based on the income of both parents and the number of children they have. However, sometimes circumstances change, and a child support order may need to be modified accordingly.
In this blog, we will examine the situations that may require the modification of a child support order and the legal process involved in Illinois. Read on to learn more.
When to Modify a Child Support Order
The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) governs child support modification. A child support order can be modified if there is a significant change in circumstances. This change can include a change in income, changes in the needs of the child, changes in custody arrangements, or changes in healthcare costs. Keep in mind that the change must be significant enough to warrant a modification.
For example, if one of the parents receives a small raise at work, this may not be significant enough to warrant a modification. However, if they lose their job or experience a significant reduction in income, this may warrant a modification. A change in the allocation of parenting time and parental responsibilities can also impact the amount of child support paid or received, and so can a change in the child’s needs, such as an increase in healthcare costs due to a serious medical condition.
How to Modify a Child Support Order
To modify a child support order, a parent must file a petition with the court. The petition should outline the changes in circumstances and provide supporting evidence. The other parent will have an opportunity to respond to the petition. The court will review the petition and any supporting evidence and decide whether to modify the child support order.
It is important to note that a child support order can only be modified by the court. Parents cannot make their own agreements to modify child support outside of court. If a parent stops paying child support without a court order, they can face legal consequences. If the parent paying support falls behind on payments, penalties and enforcement actions can be taken by the court.
Contact an Illinois Family Law Attorney Today
If you are experiencing a significant change in circumstances that affects your ability to pay child support or your support needs, consider modifying your child support order.
Contact the Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio for inquiries regarding modifying a child support order or assistance with the process. We understand that every child support modification case is unique, and we have extensive experience in helping clients modify child support orders to reflect their current circumstances. Get in touch for a consultation with one of our experienced Hinsdale family law attorneys by dialing 630-920-8855. We offer free initial consultations.