In a typical divorce where there are children who have not yet turned 18, the issues of child custody, visitation, and support are often the most contentious ones that need to be resolved. When it comes to the children, it is understandably rare for either parent to want to give an inch, especially if the divorce is anything short of amicable.
What is important to remember, though, is that some aspects of a divorce decree are not set in stone for all eternity. The law is not so hard-hearted to demand that people meet their obligations come hell or high water. This is the case when it comes to child support, as well. Instead of requiring child support to be paid, regardless of your circumstances and how poor they may have become since your divorce, there are avenues that can be used to modify your child support agreement to something that fits better with your new living situation.
Why Child Support Modifications Are Allowed
Family law in South Carolina realizes that people’s situations change following a divorce. No longer with the support of a spouse either at home or in the workplace, living situations have to changed – sometimes drastically – in order to make ends meet. Unfortunately, as your living situation changes, the financial obligations that you agreed to during the divorce, such as the amount you can pay in child support, might no longer be feasible.
Cognizant of this dilemma, and knowing that allowing changes to be made will benefit everyone in the long run, South Carolina allows for modifications to be made to the child support obligations.
How to Tell If You Are Eligible for a Modification
There are three different ways to be eligible for a modification to the amount of child support that you owe after a divorce:
- You were injured or have a medical condition that prevents you from working. To be eligible for a modification because of an injury or medical condition, you will need medical documentation from a licensed doctor to prove it;
- You make substantially less at your current job than you did when the child support order was created. Unfortunately, a modification will only be made if the new amount would be at least 20 percent less than what you currently owe under the child support order, according to the Child Support Services’ worksheet; or
- You have a new biological or adopted child living in your home since the child support order was created.
How to Pursue a Child Support Modification, If You Are Eligible
The steps to take to pursue a modification to your child support obligation will depend on whether the child support order came from the South Carolina Department of Social Services: Child Support Services Department, or whether the support order came from a divorce proceeding.
Contact a Family Law Attorney to Help
Regardless of who issued the child support order, having an experienced Greenville family law attorney like those at the Elliott Frazier Law Firm, LLC can help you get the modification that you need in order to make ends meet. Contact us today.
Angela Elliot Frazier is a Family Law Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. She graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 14 years now. Angela Frazier believes in helping you through one of the most stressful times of your life. Learn more about her experience by clicking here.