• When Can Child Support Orders Be Modified?  The Numbers are Not Set in Stone. Child Support Attorney Stacy Rocheleau Discusses When You Ask The Court to Modify Monthly Child Support.
  • April 26, 2017 | Author: Stacy Rocheleau
  • Law Firm: RIGHT Lawyers - Las Vegas Office
  • Child support amounts, ordered by the court, can be modified. To modify child support there needs to be a change in circumstances. There are typically three circumstances under which child support orders can be modified; 1) there has been at least a 20 percent change in a parent’s gross income, 2) three years has passed since the last child support order, or 3) there has been a change in custody.

    20 Percent Change in Income

    If there has been a 20 percent change in the income of the parent subject to child support, then a modification can be requested. If you have primary physical custody this means a change in income of the parent without primary custody.  If you have joint physical custody, then a percent change in either parent’s monthly gross income would qualify.

    If you know the gross monthly income of both parents you can figure our child support with our online child support calculator (https://rightlawyers.com/child-support-calculator)

    The modification is not automatic. You must request a child support modification either by discussing with the other parent or by filing a request with the court to modify child support.   It is highly recommended to discuss the modification with the other parent first.

    The common situations we see with a change of income is a parent losing a job, or a parent receiving a promotion. Being laid off is a valid reason to ask for a decrease in child support.  If you quit or were fired for cause the court may impute your income because they feel you could be working.

    Every Three Years

    Under Nevada law child support amount may be reviewed every three years. If three or more years have elapsed since the most recent child support order, you can ask your spouse to submit new paystubs to calculate a new child support figure. A 20 percent change in income is not required. Either parent can ask for the review.

    Again, the court will not make the modification automatically? You must request the modification. The other parent needs to receive notice, and the court needs to review the financial documents submitted, before they can make a new child support order.

    Modification Process

    What is the first step for a modification? You have two paths to a modification; a stipulation, or a court modification.

    A stipulation is where you and the other parent have exchanged financial documents, calculated the amounts and file the new amounts with a court.  You then file documents with the court agreeing to the new child support calculation.  Make sure to file documents.  Simply verbally agreeing does not work. If you verbally agree to the change, it may not be legally enforceable. We have seen horror stories where parents agreed to a reduced amount and then years later a parent enforcers the previous child support order.

    A court modification is where a motion is filed with the court, evidence of income is reviewed by the judge, and the judge orders the new child support amount. Before filing a modification, you must first reach out to the other parent, or respond to the other parent. If a parent resists this attempt to modify support amicable, the court may order attorney fees. The resistance must be “willful” and without justification. A parent who believes the modification is without merit, should still provide their financials documents. You can exchange your financial documents, but disagree with signing a stipulation because you think the calculations are wrong, or deviations are appropriate.

    Deviating from the Calculation

    Another area of modification is deviation. Nevada has standard child support formula, but there are times when the calculations can be deviated from. To do so, certain causes for deviation must be discussed, and reviewed. Typical cause to deviate are special needs of the child, cost of health care, and cost of child care. For more details on deviating read Deviating Nevada Child Support.