Are you considering filing to modify child support? Or did you just receive a notice that you need to attend a hearing for child support modification? Knowing what to expect at a child support modification hearing can help you be more prepared and less anxious. Furthermore, it is important to know in advance what you should do in order to reinforce your position regarding any change in child support payments.
Changing the Amount of Child Support
Either parent can file for a modification of child support by filling in a form to ask the court to reconsider the current arrangement of child support. A hearing will then be scheduled, and changes will be made if there are any adjustments to the parents’ circumstances. For example, if one of the parents loses their job, or if either party remarries. When one party asks for a child support modification hearing, the other parent will be served with a summons of the hearing’s details.
Responding to Child Support Hearing Summons
After filing for the modification, both parents must file documents to prove their financial status. The party who filed for the modification must also provide a statement of reasons for the modification. Documents that both parties should provide include tax returns, expenses, pay stubs and more. These documents are required to support the assertion of the parents’ income and expenses.
If the modification of child support is filed due to changes in the child custody agreement, a copy of the agreement must be provided by the parents as well.
Attending the Child Support Modification Hearing
Both parties will appear with their attorneys at the child support modification hearing. The party who filed for the child support modification will then present the statement of reasons on why they want to modify child support, and the other party will be given a chance to respond. The judge will take into consideration the responses of both parties, the documents submitted and determine whether any changes should be made.
What if the Other Party does Not Show Up?
If one party does not show up, it is likely the judge may grant the other party judgment by default. This means that if one party does not show up, the other party automatically wins. If you fail to turn up or submit the required forms and documents, it is possible that payments for child support can be raised without your input if you are the one paying child support. Conversely, your payments may be reduced if you receive child support.
Is it Possible to Modify Child Support Without an Attorney?
In short, it is possible to modify child support without a lawyer. You may visit NJ Court’s Self Help Center and select the “Couples and Families” category. The forms needed for a modification of child support can be found there.
However, doing this without a lawyer may be confusing and may leave you not knowing what you should do next. An experienced attorney will be able to help you with all the documents that are required, ensuring that the process is a smooth one.
Romanowski Law Offices can Help with Child Support Modification Hearings
Attorney Romanowski from Romanowski Law Offices is an experienced family law attorney that will be able to help you with child support modification hearings. As a well-known lawyer in New Jersey, he is named as the “Top 10 in New Jersey” by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys. He is also recognized for his scholarship in family law, and has dealt with some of the biggest family law cases in New Jersey. Contact us today if you would like to find out more about what we can do for you.