Can I Get An Increase In My Child Support?
A woman came into my office recently wanting to know if she could get an increase in child support. She and her former husband had been divorced for three years. She didn't know if her husband earned more money or not, but he was still employed by the same company. She, on the other hand, had changed careers and was making more money than she had been at the time of the divorce. She wanted to know if there was a way to find out how much her former husband was making without taking him to court and running the risk of having child support reduced.
There is a very simple procedure available post judgment. There is a form, available through the clerk's office, entitled "Request for Production of an Income and Expense Declaration After Judgment." Any time after the entry of a judgment of dissolution of marriage or legal separation or determination of paternity, that provides for payment of support, either party may serve the other with this request. It requires the other party to fill out an updated income and expense declaration, attach pay stubs and income tax returns.
If the party served with the request does not respond within 35 days of service, then the requesting party can request that the other party's employer provide the income and benefit information.
By obtaining this information in advance, a determination can be made regarding what to expect with regard to modification of child support and whether or not a modification of support is likely to occur.
Additionally, if the parties agree, there is another form available through the clerk's office entitled "Stipulation to Establish or Modify Child Support and Order." Once the stipulation is signed by the parties and the Judge, the new support order is then in effect.
Now, this is all simple, if everyone agrees. However, what do you do if everyone doesn't agree? Call an attorney!