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Modification and Enforcement of Support

Los Angeles Modification and Enforcement of Support Attorney


After a divorce or paternity action is completed, often times, each party retains the right to apply to the Court for either an increase or decrease of the support that they are presently receiving. This is usually applicable not only to the child support orders but also to a spousal support order as well.

The procedure for a post-judgment modification of support is to apply to the Court for a change of the support amount. In order for the Court to have jurisdiction to change the support amount, however, the requesting Party must show a change of circumstances which would justify the change in the support order.

Customarily, a change of circumstances for modifying a child support order includes the fact that one or both parties has significantly increased or decreased his or her income, the fact that the parties have changed their timesharing arrangements with their children. Another example of a proper request for a modification of support is when a parent has lost his or her job, thus changing his or her ability to provide support under the present orders or requiring additional support from the other parent.

When either party is requesting an increase or decrease in support, it is essential to understand that party must show a material change of circumstances and provide the Court and the other party with an updated financial declaration.

In California, once during a twelve month period, a party can serve a form on the other parent requesting an updated financial declaration. Should that party not respond as requested, he or she could be held liable for the costs associated with bringing a Court action to modify support.

A conference with an attorney can provide answers as to whether the change is material and what the new support level should be, and the attorney can advise you whether or not it is appropriate to apply for a modification of support.

After spousal and child support orders have been established, circumstances may change which would allow a party's to modify support. Some examples of when a spousal support order may be modified include when a party has lost or changed employment, when a party has received a raise or pay cut or when a party has retired. A party may wish to terminate or otherwise modify a long standing spousal support order. Other circumstances giving rise to such an application might include a remarriage, the passage of time, a move away, receipt of inheritance or the like. Child support may be modified based upon a change of circumstances as well. Many of the changes of circumstances which are applicable to spousal support modification may also apply to child support. Additionally, child support may be modified where there has been a material change of circumstances with respect to the timeshare with the minor child. An example of such a change would be when a parent has moved away, or the child no longer spends as much time with one parent as before, whether by agreement of the parents or otherwise.

To watch our video on modification, click on the Watch Our Firm Videos to the left.

Our firm regularly handles modifications of support and is available to assist you should the need arise with respect to this issue.