Law Office of Kevin L. Beard, P.A.

When can I change my child support order?

Maryland courts recognize that life circumstances change from moment to moment. We do not always make the same amount of money and we do not always have a job. Therefore, when life circumstances change, Maryland parents who pay child support may be able to apply to have their child support requirements changed. This article will discuss what circumstances are required to be present in order for a parent to request such a change.

Generally speaking, there must exist a "substantial and continuing material change" in a parent's circumstances in order for a child support modification to be requested. That change needs to have happened during the time frame after the previous child support order was instituted. The terms "continuing material change" refer to any change that has persisted for six months and will likely persist in the future indefinitely.

The types of material changes in circumstances that courts look for in reviewing a child support order include changes related to incarceration, income, costs associated with heath care, work-related day care, visitation transportation costs, the child's financial needs and more. These changes usually relate to the child support payer's level of income and ability to meet his or her child support obligations or the child support receivers' need for money to pay for the child.

Maryland residents can speak with an experienced family law attorney to review their particular circumstances and determine whether child support modifications could be warranted and/or approved in their cases. Once it is determined that child support modifications may be warranted, then an appeal to the court can be organized and filed.

Source: Law Office of Kevin L Beard PA, "Modifications," accessed June 02, 2016

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