In this section

Modification of Child Support/Spousal Support

A family court order or divorce decree is issued in response to the circumstances at the time of the order. Of course, the fact that an agreement was made or a court ruled on an issue does not mean that nothing will ever change. Life carries on, and circumstances change.

When you have experienced a substantial change in your circumstances, you may need to ask the court to increase or decrease child support or spousal support. It is crucial to have an experienced family law attorney on your side who understands the process of seeking support modifications.

Since we were founded more than 25 years ago, people throughout Michigan have sought out Harris & Literski for help with their family law needs. We believe this is because of our competence, our compassion and our commitment to achieving our clients' goals.

If you need to seek a spousal or child support modification, contact our office to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss how we can help you. We can also assist you if you need to make changes to your child custody or parenting (visitation) orders because of a change of domicile, move out of state or change of school district.

Making Changes To Your Child Support Or Spousal Support Order

If you have experienced what Michigan law calls a material change in circumstances, you may be eligible to have your child support or alimony increased or decreased. Changes in circumstances that may be considered material include events such as:

  • A layoff or involuntarily job loss
  • Taking a pay cut or a reduction in hours in order to keep your job
  • Having to accept a new job that pays substantially less
  • An illness or injury that creates considerable medical expenses or that may prevent you from earning your full wages
  • Substantial new expenses on behalf of the child
  • Having additional children or new dependents because you have remarried

Our lawyers will evaluate your situation and give you our honest opinion about whether you qualify for a child or spousal support modification and, if you do, what you could expect your new payments to be based on the guidelines outlined in Michigan law.

If your spousal or child support modification request is granted, it will take effect on the date of the new order, not the date when you experienced the change in circumstances. Therefore, it is important to make your request as soon as possible.

We will help you gather evidence to support your petition and prepare it to be filed with the court. If it is possible to negotiate an agreement with your ex-spouse, we will ask the court to accept that agreement and enter an order for the agreed-upon amount. If that is not possible, we will respond to any objections and represent you at any hearings.

Even if you and your ex have a private agreement, you should still file for a modification. Only the court can change your support order. If you do not pay the entire amount of spousal or child support you have been ordered to pay, you could be held in contempt of court, which could result in penalties such as the loss of your driver's license or even jail time.

Contact us today to set up a free initial consultation. We are here to make sure your spousal or child support modification is handled correctly and that your rights are protected.