Because life circumstances change, a child custody or support agreement that made sense at the time of a divorce or the end of a nonmarital relationship may no longer reflect the realities of a family situation.
Florida courts allow for changes to original child custody or support orders if a substantial change in circumstance warrants. Examples of substantial changes include:
Extended unemployment that impacts a parent’s ability to pay child support or alimony
Increased health expenses of a parent or child
Increased educational expenses
Disability of a parent or child
A significant increase or decrease in one parent’s income (as long as a decrease in income was not voluntary)
Remarriage or cohabitation by a parent who receives spousal support
It is important to note that parents cannot act independently to modify their own support or custody agreements. Parents who decide to stop paying support or who pay less than required may be held in contempt of court or face other penalties. Even if a parent has lost his or her job and has no income, he or she must go to court to request a modification of the child support order.
Contact Meador & Johnson, P.A.
At Meador & Johnson, P.A. we have thorough knowledge of the circumstances that must be shown to modify an original court order. The court does not approach modifications lightly, so it is critical that you work with a lawyer who understands the thresholds that must be met to get a custody modification or spousal or child support modification approved or defend against one.
Our lawyers provide aggressive, intelligent advocacy to clients throughout northwest Florida. Call 800-785-4969 or use our online contact form to schedule a consultation.