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Child support is one of those issues that ex-spouses often disagree about from the day it's ordered until the day it's done. If you're unhappy with either the amount of child support you have to pay or the amount that you're receiving, you may consider asking the court for a change. Before you do, however, you should understand just what goes into a successful request for a modification of support.

Child support is one of those issues that ex-spouses often disagree about from the day it's ordered until the day it's done. If you're unhappy with either the amount of child support you have to pay or the amount that you're receiving, you may consider asking the court for a change. Before you do, however, you should understand just what goes into a successful request for a modification of support.

1. You cannot make a request too often.

Talk to your attorney about how often your local jurisdiction will generally hear modification requests. Some jurisdictions limit requests to no more than once every three years in order to avoid the possibility of ex-spouses dragging each other into court constantly for trivial changes.

2. You want the request to be worth it.

If your ex-spouse got a tiny raise that only amounts to a few dollars every paycheck, it's unlikely to produce a substantial change in the amount of support he or she owes. Wait until the income is higher or the child's needs are greater before you ask for a modification.

3. Expect an investigation into income and expenses.

If you're requesting an increase in child support because your child's needs have change, expect to provide clear documentation to the court. For example, if your child has been diagnosed with a learning disability that requires special tutoring, make sure you have both the medical evidence and evidence of the costs associated with his or her education on hand for the judge.

Similarly, if you're asking the judge to lower what you pay because your income has dropped, make sure that you can both explain why your income has lowered, what you've done to try to recoup the loss and why it isn't working right now. Have the documentation of your reduced pay on hand.

Getting a modification of child support isn't impossible -- you just want to make sure that you aren't appearing vindictive, wasteful or unprepared when you head into court.

Source: thespruce.com, "Before You Ask for a Child Support Modification," Jennifer Wolf, accessed March 06, 2018

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