Making Divorce Modifications in TX
Consult a Harris County Attorney
Divorce decrees sometimes need adjustments post-divorce due to changing circumstances. For instance, if you’re paying child support and lose your job, you might need to modify the agreement to prevent financial strain.
Under Texas Family Code, specific rules govern the modification of child support obligations. Changes in income, whether an increase for the ex-spouse or a decrease due to job changes, can justify altering the child support amount.
Criteria for Modifying Child Support
- You must wait at least three years from the time the last order (whether an original order or modified order) was set into place
- Whatever the “new” amount of child support should be must differ by at least 20% or $100 from the current monthly child support amount
If these criteria don’t apply, you can still request a modification by demonstrating a significant change in circumstances, such as:
- Job loss or significant job raise
- Medical expenses
- Unexpected costs
- Pay cut
- Change in the child’s daily needs (school, medical, etc.)
- Change in the custody of the child
If you need to move out of state, you may need to modify your child custody or visitation schedule to accommodate for the distance.
Procedure for Modifying a Divorce Decree
While it might seem easier to directly negotiate a new arrangement with your ex-spouse, such as informally agreeing to adjust your support payments, this approach isn’t legally sound. Changes to your divorce decree are complex and can’t be effectively handled through casual agreements. Legally, these alterations must be processed through the harris county court system. The court, having authority over your divorce decree and its enforcement, is the only entity that can officially approve or reject any modifications you propose.
- Texas Child Visitation Modification
- Texas Child Custody Modifications
- Child Support Modification in Texas (Part 1)
Evidence Required for Modification
Merely requesting a modification isn’t sufficient for the courts to approve it. You’ll need to initiate legal proceedings and present concrete evidence supporting your request. This involves detailing the reasons for seeking a modification and demonstrating how it would be advantageous for everyone involved. Typically, modifications are granted when there has been a significant change in circumstances. This means proving that the situation of either one or both parents has changed considerably and materially since the original order was established.
Do you need a divorce modification? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC today to get assistance from a professional Houston attorney.