Can you modify an existing child support order in Florida?

On Behalf of | May 14, 2021 | Family Law

One thing family courts in Florida excel at is providing help to families in need. Judges know that change can happen abruptly, leaving kids or spouses at risk of suffering hardships.

Although the family courts’ first responsibility involves protecting the interests and needs of children, they can offer aid to parents as well. For example, when an existing child support order is no longer viable, the court may allow you to seek modifications to your order.

Under what conditions can you request child support modifications?

First, you need to understand when and when you do not qualify for a change in your orders. The state department of revenue explains eligibility requirements thusly:

  • If your current child support order does not end within six months of your change request,
  • And you have not sought a review or modification of the order within three years,
  • Or your life circumstances have undergone a substantial change,
  • Then you may qualify to have your current order reviewed for possible modifications.

Most Jacksonville parents seek child support modifications because of a change in their financial circumstances.

What changing circumstances are acceptable?

Either parent can request modifications based on their changing circumstances. For example, the receiving parent may lose a job and need more support funds to care for the child. On the flip side, the paying parent may experience a layoff or reduced work hours, making it hard or impossible to meet their existing support obligations. If either parent suffers a severe injury or illness, it may also result in successful child support order modifications.

In many cases, a family law attorney fills a critical role in successfully seeking court order changes. For example, when a lawyer prepares and files your petition for a modification, it may lend strength to your side of the issue.