Many people lost their jobs or saw a reduction in earnings in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic swept America and the rest of the world. Financial issues plagued people from all walks of life, including divorced parents. Many struggled with paying court obligations such as child support.
Some parents may simply refuse to pay child support when times get tough. However, this is not only unfair to the child but also illegal. Any child support you don’t pay adds up. You could get fined and have to pay even more. Your pay could get garnished. Your tax refund could get intercepted. Some parents end up losing their drivers’ licenses and professional licenses. Others get their passports taken away or end up in jail.
If you don’t want to face punishment for not paying child support, then be proactive and request a modification. But do you qualify?
The main requirement is a material change in circumstances. This includes job loss, suffering a disability, or being incarcerated. Changes in child care or healthcare expenses may also qualify. The income change must be at least 25% and must have occurred after your child support amount was set.
Time is of the essence when requesting a child support modification. The child support obligation can change only as of the date of the filing, which means it is not retroactive to when the change in circumstances occurred.
Download the COVID-19 Modification Request packet. You will be asked to fill out several forms: the Modification Review Questionnaire, Notice of Legal Representation, and Financial Statement. You will be asked for information about yourself and your children. You will also be asked about your employment. Be prepared to provide proof of employment, such as pay stubs, W-2s, 1099s, tax returns, and other tax forms.
You will also be asked about health insurance and child care expenses for your children. The form will also ask specific questions about child custody and any alimony you are paying. You will also need to provide information about the other parent and employment, if known.
When the forms have been filled out and you have all the required documentation, send the completed package to the child support office in the county where your case occurred.
Keep in mind that the form requests a lot of information. You may be confused or frustrated and want to give up. A lawyer can help you with the process. If you cannot afford a lawyer, you should be able to find legal services in your area that can help you on a limited basis.
If you are having financial difficulties, don’t neglect your responsibilities to your children. They deserve your financial support.
The Columbia child support lawyers at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. can help you get a child support modification. We can assist you in getting a favorable outcome. Schedule a consultation today. Call (410) 774-5987 or fill out the online form. We have two offices to serve you.
7310 Ritchie Highway, Suite 910
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
30 Corporate Center
10440 Little Patuxent Parkway,
Columbia, MD 21044