Getting your child support lowered or raised requires a court order that modifies the previous order of child support. You don’t have to necessarily go to court to make this happen, for instance, if the parties can reach an agreement, then the child support can be modified and approved by the Court. More often than not, most child support modifications do occur as the result of a rather short hearing before a judge.
Indiana law generally requires that a child support order can be modified after 12 months have passed since the last time the court addressed child support issues and the amount of child support would change by at least 20% (up or down). What can cause a 20% change? Most often child support is modified due to a change in income of either party. This could be the result of a higher paying job or a job loss.
Other situations where child support can change by 20% are in cases where one of the parties is attempting to obtain social security disability, has become incarcerated, or has obtained new child support orders that need to be accounted for.
In determining a child support order, courts in Indiana will look first to a child support worksheet. This worksheet takes into consideration both the mother’s and father’s income (or what they may be able to earn – potential income); whether either party has subsequent children; older children that they pay child support for or are responsible for, daycare expenses, spousal maintenance payments, portions paid for having the children covered by health insurance, and overnight visitations that the non-custodial parents may have.
The child support worksheet will then present a recommended weekly amount to be paid. This amount is “presumed” to be the correct amount. The Court does have discretion to deviate from the recommended child support amount. When deviating from the presumed amount of child support the court will consider issues such as long term unemployment or whether there are other expenses that may not be considered in the child support worksheet.
The Law Office of Jeffery M. Haupt is located in South Bend, Indiana and helps people handle family law issues such as divorce, parenting time, child support, paternity, and child custody, criminal defense matters, DUIs, theft charges, license suspensions, and for Bankruptcy. The information in this blog should only be used for educational purposes and not be construed as legal advice. Nothing in this blog creates an attorney-client relationship between me and any readers of this blog. No attorney-client relationship is created until you have a document from me saying so. DO NOT POST ABOUT CASE PARTICULARS IN THE COMMENT SECTION.