Modification of Child Support Orders

Changing Your Washington State Child Support Order

It's very common for a custodial-or a non-custodial-parent to need to request a change to their child support order at some time during their child's growing years. In fact, in many cases, there is a provision in the initial order telling the two parties to review the child custody order at certain intervals to make sure it is still appropriate.

I have been reviewing post-divorce child support issues since 1979, and I can answer your questions and advise you of your possible outcomes. I invite you to contact my Bellevue law office to discuss your questions about the child support order that was entered in your divorce.

If both parents agree upon the change to the child support, the parties can present their agreement to the court, which minimizes the legal fees and hassle involved in this process. If you believe that the child support amount should be changed, but the other parent disagrees, I can represent you in court if we need to take legal action to compel the change you are requesting.

Reasons to Request a Change to Your Child Support Order

  • If the non-custodial parent is not paying the amount of support that is required by the Washington State Child Support Schedule
  • When a parent experiences an involuntary loss of income, such as a reduction of work hours or unemployment
  • If a parent has a significant increase in income
  • If the child's needs have changed since the previous child support order, such as:
    • A child is entering or leaving daycare
    • A child's disability or illness is causing increased living and educational expenses
    • A child requires private schooling
  • The parent who is paying child support contributes to the support of other children
  • One parent refuses to contribute to the reasonable post-secondary education expenses of the child

Issues in Changing Your Child Support Order

It's not enough to simply ask the court for more child support. You must prove that there is a need or a substantial change of circumstances. Sometimes this will require "discovery" of the facts, interviewing the parents, and investigating assets.

In other cases, parties can agree to change child support after they exchange evidence of increased or decreased needs or financial ability. I can assist you in presenting your agreement to the court in the proper form.

I provide thorough, detailed legal assistance to help my clients prove their child support case in superior court. For sound legal guidance, a prompt response, and effective legal representation, contact my Bellevue law office to schedule an appointment.

I offer a free half-hour initial consultation. If you have questions and think you may need a lawyer to represent you in court, call to learn more.