Losing a Job or a Pay Cut can be Grounds for Modification of Child Support

Losing a Job or a Pay Cut can be Grounds for Modification of Child Support

How are Child Support Payments Determined?

When couples with minor children get divorced in Utah, a child support order is determined by the court based on a formula that calculates each partner’s gross income to come up with a reasonable child support payment for the non-custodial parent.

This is considered a fair and proper procedure that protects the financial welfare of both the parents and the children. It normally works well when both parents income remains stable or even growing, but when one or both parents have a downward turn in income, it can become difficult, if not impossible, to continuing paying the court ordered amount.

Penalties for Non-Payment of Child Support

The state of Utah takes parental responsibility seriously and will vigorously enforce valid child support orders if they are not abided by in totality. If a parent with a child support obligation fails to pay all or part of the court ordered monthly amount, there can be serious penalties.

They could be ordered back into family court to explain to the judge why they are in arrears. The court can order them to pay all missed payments or face possible jail time. They could have their wages regularly garnished until all payments are caught up. They can even have their driver’s license suspended until they fully comply with all payments. These are severe consequences that parents should avoid at all costs.

Requesting a Child Support Modification

Fortunately, Utah’s family courts allow a parent with a real financial need to request a modification of the amount of support they are ordered to pay. Most parents want to support their children and provide them with as much help as they can.  However, way too often a parent loses their job or has a reduction in pay and just can’t keep up with the previous court ordered payments. The court will consider the circumstances and if the loss of income is through no fault of the parent, normally it will calculate a new child support amount based on the lesser income.

Rex B Bushman is an experienced family law attorney who is here to help you and your family with all your legal needs. Please call at (801) 652-9413 or email at info@rexbbushman.com to discuss solutions to any legal problem.