How to Modify Child Support

Posted: 7 March, 2024

There are three situations when child support can be modified.  The first situation is when it has been three years since the last child support order was filed.  Next would be when there has a been a change in either parent’s gross monthly income by 20 percent, or there has been a change in the custody schedule.

Use our Child Support Calculator to see what your new child support amount might be.  Or schedule a free call with one of our attorneys to review your child support situation.  Right Divorce Lawyers charges a flat fee for a child support modification.

Every Three Years

Under Nevada law, parents can request a child support review every three years.  A 20 percent change in income or change in custody is not required.  After three years has passed, either parent can ask for child support to be reviewed.  Thee court will not make the modification automatically. You must request the modification.

Typically, this happens with parents exchanging financial paystubs and other documents proving monthly income. If the other parent refuses to share these documents, a divorce attorney may suggest that you proceed with filing your motion. The judge may order reimbursement to you for any attorney fees spent.

20 Percent Change in Income

If there has been a 20 percent change in the income of the parent subject to child support, then a parent can request a modification. The change can be an increase or a decrease in income.

Again, the modification is not automatic. You must request a modification either by discussing this option with the other parent, or by filing a “Motion for Child Support Modification”. However, you should always discuss modification with the other parent before filing a motion. If you know the gross monthly income of both parents, you can calculate the new amount with our online child support calculator .  Or contact one of our  divorce attorneys to help you with a modification.

The most common situations that our firm’s divorce attorneys encounter deals with the change of income. For example, one parent may lose a job or a parent may receive a promotion. Losing a job is a valid reason to ask for a decrease in child support, unless the parent in question voluntarily quit to avoid child support.

Often, clients will have temporary changes in income, like seasonal jobs. In these instances, many divorce attorneys don’t recommend modifying child support, even if the change is 20%. By the time you have your day in court, your income will be back to normal.

Change in Custody

If the custody arrangement changes from joint physical to primary physical (or vice versa), a new support calculation should be made.

In cases of joint physical custody, Nevada uses an “offset” when calculating child support. Primary physical custody situations typically contain no offset.  For example, you may be paying $787 in child support and your former spouse had primary physical custody. However, the situation has changed and you now have joint physical custody.  The amount of child support should be modified to reflect a joint custody schedule.

How to Modify Child Support

What is the first step for a modification? You have two paths: an agreement or a court modification.

An agreement is where both you and the other parent have exchanged financial documents, calculated the amounts, and filed the new amounts with the court.  You file documents with the court agreeing to the new child support calculation.

In a court modification, one parent files a request with the court, called a motion. A judge reviews the request along with both parent’s financial disclosure form.   Based on the evidence the judge orders the new child support amount.

Schedule a free call to talk with one of our divorce attorneys.  Right Divorce Lawyers charges a flat fee for child support modifications.