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I Lost My Job —Can I Skip My Child Support Payments?

I Lost My Job —Can I Skip My Child Support Payments?

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Loss of a job means uncertainty and stress. When that income disappears, one must determine how to continue to pay bills and make ends meet while beginning the search for another job. Stress can be added when child support payments are part of monthly expenses. If you lose a regular source of income after being laid off or fired, where do you go from there as it relates to child support?

Following Orders

If a court orders you to pay child support and you lose your job, that loss does not automatically excuse you from holding your obligation to make those payments. While you may be tempted to hold off on making payments for a short period of time, doing so may lead to certain penalties such as increased payments later on, a fine, or jail time.

Notify the Court

You should first reach out to the court and notify them of the change in your income. The only way your monthly payment amount can change is through a court order. Notifying the court as soon as possible after you lose your job begins the process of changing your payment amount.

Possible Outcomes

Depending on the reason for your job loss, the judge may make a change to your child support order. If you voluntarily quit your job, that reason will not result in a change to your payment amounts because you left willingly. However, if you lost your job unwillingly, either because you were laid off or because you were fired, a change to your support amount is more likely.

A judge that determines that you are eligible for a payment change will then examine several factors to decide your new amount in your new order. The judge will consider any income you have, including unemployment income, as well as your ability to work and the federal minimum wage.

Seek Legal Help

If you lose your job and are worried about your child support payments, you have the right to seek a modification to your payment amount. Friedman & Friedman PLLC, Attorneys at Law will work with you to help you reach a solution that will bring you more financial peace of mind.

Call us today at (516) 688-0088 to speak with a Westchester attorney about your situation.


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