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When Can an Illinois Child Support Order Be Modified?

Posted on in Child Support

Will County divorce lawyer child support

When you and your spouse get a divorce, there are many issues that must be covered before the case can be finalized and closed. When you have children, that list grows even longer and includes matters such as determining a parenting time schedule, allocating decision-making responsibilities, and determining child support payments. Raising a child is expensive and both parents have an obligation to financially provide for their child, which is where child support comes in. Child support is typically paid by the parent with the minority of parenting time to the parent with the majority of parenting time until the child has turned 18 or until the child has graduated from high school, whichever comes later.

Reasons for Modification

The basic child support obligation, or minimum required amount to be paid each month, is calculated using a formula that takes into consideration the incomes of both parents at the time of the divorce, in addition to the amount of parenting time they have and several other factors. This support obligation is used to help cover basic living costs for the child, such as food, clothing, and housing. However, the variables that were present at the time the child support order was put into place are not constant and will typically change over the years. To accommodate these changes, the state of Illinois allows parents to request modifications to the support order if a “substantial change in circumstances” has occurred, which could include any of the following conditions:

  • A Change in Either Parent’s Income: The Illinois child support calculation takes into consideration the income of both parents. If either parent has a significant change in income, this could affect the amount of child support that is paid each month. Typically, you must be able to show that the amount of support being paid each month deviates by the amount of support that should be paid each month by at least 20 percent, or no less than $10.

  • Either Parent Remarrying: In some cases, if either parent gets remarried, this could change the amount of support that is paid each month. However, just the fact that a parent has remarried will not automatically trigger a support order review, nor does it necessarily qualify as a “significant change in circumstances.” If the new spouse of either parent greatly contributes to the child’s care, the child support amount may need to be adjusted.

  • Changes in the Child’s Needs: In some cases, a child may experience a significant increase in his or her needs, which may trigger the need for an increase in the amount of child support paid each month. This can be through an increase in health insurance costs, health care, or other means.

  • Changes in Parenting Time Allocation: It is also possible that a significant change in the parenting time schedule could call for a change in the child support order. Parenting time allocation is a factor in determining child support payments, so a change in parenting time could mean a change in child support.

Contact a Wheaton, IL Child Support Attorney

At some point, there may come a time where you may need to request a change to your child support order because of a change that has happened in you or your spouse’s lives. If you are looking to make a change to your child support order, you should speak with a knowledgeable DuPage County child support lawyer. At the Law Office of Ronald L. Hendrix, P.C., we can help you file a petition for a support order modification or we can help you defend yourself against a proposed modification if you feel it is unfair. To get started with one of our lawyers, call our office today at 630-355-7776 to schedule a free consultation. 


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