You’ve gotten through the tough part. Divorce was not easy. You tried your hardest to make it work but it just wasn’t meant to last. You and your ex-spouse were in and out of court. Now you have gotten remarried and you want a modification on your child support. If both you and your ex-spouse agree to the modification, then you must submit an agreement in writing to the court. It’s always encouraged that the two parties agree on the modification terms. It will help to save on the costs of going to court and it will prevent the court from proposing terms that both parties may not like. In a modification, you should know the rebuttable assumption that courts have. It’s also essential to know some grounds for modification including a new child being born and the new spouse’s income being added to the equation.
The court can deviate from guidelines if following the guidelines means that the decision would not be for the child(ren)’s best interest. These guidelines are what constitutes income in determining child support. Some of these elements include salaries, pensions, or even Social Security benefits. When the court chooses to deviate from these guidelines, they take in account several different factors. These factors include the wealth and income of both parties, the standard of living and situation, the payors ability to earn, the receivers ability to earn, and both parties responsibility to support others. An example of that last factor would be if an ex-spouse had to take care of their parent.
Some Grounds for Modification
A New Child is Born
If the person paying child support has gotten remarried and has a new child then this could be grounds for child support modification. Utah’s courts feel that your income should benefit all children, not just children from your previous relationship. They take into account the payor’s obligation to their “new family” when determining modification. You must note that supporting a new child doesn’t relieve you of your previous child support.
New Spouse Income
When you get remarried, your new spouse’s income now becomes relevant. It could essentially impact your ability to pay child support. Your new spouse will usually contribute to areas such as household expenses, utilities, and/or rent. You will end up spending less on these expenses meaning you will have the ability to pay more in child support.
Divorce has already taken its toll on you. You’ve moved on from it. You’re now remarried. You may even have a new child. In this, your agreement will now have to be modified. This may either help you or may not help you depending upon the circumstances. You want to make sure the courts give you the rights you deserve. If you can’t come to an agreement with your previous spouse then you may need a family law attorney to step in. You need someone who will actually listen to your new needs and concerns after remarriage. You need someone who is an expert in family law. Salt Lake City lawyer Christopher M. Ault at The Ault Firm is available to help you with advice and experience. Contact him at 801-539-9000 for a free consultation or fill out this form.