How to file for modification of child support in Texas.
Modification means change.
A court order for custody or child support can be changed. However, there are legal guidelines for changing custody and support amount.
How to change current custody, visitation, medical, or child support order.
You file a modification case. A Texas court cannot enforce any changes that parents agree to outside of the court. Only a judge can change a court order.
It is important to talk to an attorney before filing because modification cases are facts-dependent. In other words, the court will look at the facts of your case before allowing you to change custody, medical, or child support order.
One of our staff can assess your case and schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys. You need an attorney to help you determine jurisdiction (where to file), your rights, and if you should file for modification.
When you file a modification case, you are re-opening your family court case. Therefore, you use the same case number.
How long does it take to finish a modification case?
If the other parent is challenging your request for increase in child support amount, then it may take a couple of months. IF the parents are able to agree on change of custody
or child support.
There are three basis for asking for a change of your current order.
1. Agreement; OR
2. The circumstances of the child, a conservator, or a person affected by the order have materially and substantially changed; OR
3. It has been at least three years since the last child support order, and a new support order, based on child support guidelines, would differ from the last support order by at least 20% or $100.
Some examples of ‘substantial’ or ‘material’ change:
- The income of the parent ordered to pay child support has either increased or decreased, or
- Parent ordered to pay child support is legally responsible for additional children ( aka new baby)
- Certain criminal conduct (especially conduct that affect the child)
- The parent ordered to pay child support is legally responsible for additional children, or
- The child’s medical insurance coverage has changed, or
- The child’s living arrangements have changed.
If you file a frivolous (baseless) suit, the court can award attorney’s fees against you.
Contact us today.