A divorce does not end a parent’s obligation to financially provide for their child, even if their child is in the custody of the parent’s ex much of the time. In Michigan, both of a child’s parents are obligated to support them, regardless of the legal or relationship status between them. Once a child support order or agreement is entered by the court, parents are bound to fulfill its terms for the benefit of their child.
However, it is not uncommon for a child’s needs to change as time passes, or for a parent’s financial situation to shift. For example, a parent who pays child support to their ex for the benefit of their shared children may find that they are unable to make full and complete payments if they lose their job or have their hours reduced at work. The failure of a parent to remain compliant on their child support order can cause them to face legal sanctions; without a course of action, a parent in this precarious situation may be punished for their unwilling support delinquency.
When a parent is faced with a change in their circumstances or the financial needs of their child, they may seek a modification. A modification can lower or increase the amount of money that a parent is responsible for contributing to their child’s care. In order to secure a modification, it may be necessary for a parent to go to court if the other parent is does not agree with the request.
This post does not provide any advice or guidance to readers on child support or any other legal matter. When faced with challenges surrounding one’s operating child support agreement, a parent can consult with their trusted family law attorney for support. Individual child support cases should be addressed individually for case-specific assistance and care.