Melbourne Custody And Support Modification Attorneys
Court orders, such as divorce decrees and agreements on child custody, child support and alimony, remain in effect until they are modified. And they must be modified legally, for the altered agreement to be upheld and enforced in court. Verbal agreements between parents are not enforceable in court.
A post-decree modification is an alteration of a court order to reflect changing circumstances. If you have been laid off and are no longer able to meet your alimony obligations, a modification should be sought to avoid incurring alimony or child support arrears.
Generally, you must have a substantial, material, unanticipated and permanent change of circumstance, since the last court order, to obtain a modification of custody, time sharing, parenting plans, child support or alimony.
Examples of Modifications
- The children’s needs have changed, and the modification alters the custody agreement.
- One of you has experienced a major increase or decrease in income, so the modification raises or lowers child support.
- One parent retires and wants alimony payments to reflect the change in income.
- One parent is having trouble with alcohol, drugs or mental health, and the modification seeks supervision of that parent’s time with the kids.
- There is a need to protect the children from harm by one parent. Emergency motions and/or injunctions can also be filed if children are in immediate danger.
Support and Custody Modifications for Brevard County
If you take a shortcut and alter the existing agreement between yourselves, without a court order, you will find that you still legally owe the original alimony payments. Your informal agreement will be irrelevant.
Unless agreed to by the parties, the courts require that the proposed modifications be substantial. In child support modifications, the change in monthly payment must amount to a 15 percent change or a minimum of $50, whichever is greater.
Platt Hopwood Russell & Cole of Melbourne, Florida, is experienced in post-decree modifications and has helped hundreds of clients on both sides — both pursuing a modification and defending against a petition for modification. We also assist with enforcement and contempt proceedings when the other party is not complying with court-ordered visitation/time-sharing orders.