A lot of parents think that filing a motion to modify child support is a simple and straight forward matter. This isn’t true. Filing this kind of motion can open up a can of worms. When you file this motion, your ex is going to file a motion of their own. Very rarely – if ever – will a parent ignore a notice that their ex has filed a motion to modify child support. Any parent with any sense is going to call an experienced family law attorney in Houston immediately.
When you file a motion to modify child support, you’re going to have submit certain financial information. This includes the following:
- Income, including recent paystubs and tax returns
- Information regarding any bonuses or commissions you’ve received
- Updated information regarding child care, health insurance and other child-related expenses
- Information on whether you’re remarried or are cohabiting with another person
- Any changes in assets, including a vehicle, home or boat
- Updated information on your children including their age and how much time they stay with each parent
All of these things will have an impact on your child support. If you’re the parent paying child support, the judge may order your child support be increased. If you’re the parent receiving child support, the amount of your support could be decreased. It’s a matter of being careful what you wish for because you just may get it.
Your family law attorney in Houston will do their best to get the outcome you want. However, they will run the numbers prior to filing your motion so you have an idea of what the judge may decide. It’s in your best interest to follow whatever recommendation you make.
Why Would My Child Support Increase if I File a Motion to Modify Support?
There are all sorts of reasons why your child support could go up. Your Houston family lawyer will warn you of these ahead of time. Some of these reasons include the following:
- Your spouse has only been working for a few months and the judge wants to make sure her job is stable before they modify child support
- You’re earning bonuses now but you weren’t when child support was first calculated
- You may be paying an amount you and your ex agreed on. When the court actually calculates child support using the guidelines, you could end up paying more.
- You’ve purchased a new car, house or boat. If this is the case, the judge may think that you’re hiding assets. If this is the case, they will want to see a truer accounting of your income.
- The children are spending less time with you now than when child support was originally calculated.
While your attorney will do their best to get the outcome you want, that doesn’t mean it’s a guarantee. Most Houston family lawyers know what the judges’ tendencies are. They’ll have a good idea of what the judge may decide long before your motion hearing takes place.
It May Be a Better Idea to Negotiate with Your Ex
One option is to have your lawyer negotiate with your ex’ attorney to modify child support. Your ex knows there’s as much a chance of their support going down as there is of it going up. It may be in their best interest to agree to a different amount as long as it won’t hurt the children.
The main concern is the best interests of your children. It’s important that you don’t let money get in the way of your kids’ health and happiness. It will certainly be the judge’s main concern.
Your Houston Family Law Attorney Can Let You Know if It’s Worth the Risk
If you’re not sure whether filing a motion to reduce support is a good idea, talk to your attorney. Your family lawyer in Houston will review your case and let you know what will happen if you file your motion.
While there is never a guarantee as to what a judge will do in court, your lawyer will have a good idea. Your attorney will be familiar with how the judge usually rules. They’ll also be able to look at the financials, run the guidelines and estimate what the new child support amounts will be.
Call today and schedule a consultation with a family law attorney in Houston. Let them review your motion before you file any papers with the court.