What Are Some Reasons That People Seek To Modify A Child Custody Or Support Order?
A common reason to modify child custody is when a parent moves farther away, or to another state; oftentimes a parent wants to protect their kids from child endangerment. Child endangerment could mean many things in this context – anything from lack of supervision to violence. Those are the most common reasons, for a request for a change in child custody.
The most common reason to request a reduction in child support is a change in employment status or if another child is brought into the family. Parent’s often request an increase to the child support obligation due to a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA), or an increase child related expenses.
What Changes In A Child’s Life Can Call For A Child Support, Child Custody Or Visitation Modification?
Child related expenses can increase if a family learns through their medical provider that their child has a medical issue that needs a high level of attention, is not covered by insurance and can be very expensive. Most situations will warrant the contribution of both parents. Also, if a child decides that they have a passion for or excel at a sport, or other extra-curricular activity, it is essential to encourage them to develop the interest. However, this can also become very expensive and may change an child support obligation by one or both parents.
If a parent wants to request a modification in child support, there must be a 25% change in the child support obligation.
As children grow older, their needs as well as school and activity schedules change.
Are A Child’s Preferences As They Grow Older Taken Into Account When Requesting A Modification In Custody Or Parenting Time?
There are many situations where the child’s preference is considered, but they must be mature enough and the child must not be pressured by either parent. It will not be regarded as the sole factor.
However, if the child is a teenager, has a car, and decides to drive to Mom’s or Dad’s more often, this does not require a court order. The courts will not discipline the children, but the Courts will and do penalize the parents for not following orders. Of course, parents want the children to follow the rules, and the rules should mirror the court order. Co-parents need to communicate effectively to manage the child’s schedule. Court Orders regarding parenting time are a great guide; The parents can agree to alter the schedule, so long as there is mutual agreement.
If A Change In Parenting Time Is Considered, Does That Mean Any Child Support Could Also Be Altered In Conjunction With That Or Is It A Separate Petition Altogether?
It generally should be adjusted with parenting time. In Minnesota, there is physical custody and legal custody. You can call a custody determination sole physical or joint physical custody but have parenting time that does not reflect the physical custody label.
Even though the term physical custody is used, the major factor, in determining child support is parenting time. The child support amounts are based on the number of overnights the child spends with each parent, which is considered with each parent’s income.
What Is Considered A Material Or Substantial Change In Child Custody Or Support Needs?
A significant factor is if a parent plans to leave the state and bring their child. That would most likely change the parenting time.
What Evidence Is Going To Help A Petition To Modify Support And Parenting Time In Court?
They are separate issues, but they can be combined in the same petition.
Many parents have petitioned successfully to change parenting time because the other parent may have been endangering the child. There is an endangerment standard, and if the parent has a recurring problem with alcohol or drug abuse, that could be a reason to modify the order. Other forms of endangerment could be if a child resides with a neglectful parent.
Documents showing felony convictions related to the harm of someone’s person, medical records showing that the parent has a current problem with drugs, is good evidence. Even a note from the school saying that the child is commonly absent or tardy because the parent is unable to get the child to class on time would be good evidence.
Proving income could be a letter offering employment that states the income. A change in income would be a good reason for either parent for the modification of child support. Another way to prove income would be pay stubs or taxes.
For more information on Reasons To Modify A Family Court Order, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (651) 796-3400 today.
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