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What happens if you cannot make your child support payments?

Divorce will bring significant changes to your life, and these changes may not stop just because your divorce is final. In fact, changes may continue to affect your life, and you may find that you are struggling to make your child support payments. If this happens to you, it may be in your interests to seek a modification of your support order. Don't just pay less or stop paying altogether without learning about the legal options available to you. 

Like with any significant family law decision, you will find it helpful to speak with a legal ally before you move forward. Your circumstances may be different, but this has no bearing on your ability to be a loving and active parent. Modifications are possible, but to avoid problems, you will want to be sure you take the appropriate legal steps.

What should you know?

If you are in a position where you can't make payments, you may think it's enough to just pay less or cease payments until things get better. This is not a long-term solution, and it can lead to complications with the other parent as well as with the authorities. Some of the following facts may be helpful to you:

  • It is in your interests to address this issue quickly. Delaying can lead to a dispute with the parent who receives child support.
  • Sometimes, it may be possible reach an agreement with the other parent regarding a change in your child support payments.
  • If you are able to make partial payments, keep doing so as this is in the best interests of your kids.
  • Document your change in financial circumstances the best you can in case you have to go to court over your modification or a dispute.
  • You may file a formal request for a modification with the court, whether it's a request for a change or a new agreement you reached with the other parent.

Dealing with child support complications can be stressful and emotionally challenging. This is why you may find it helpful to seek help instead of handling the matter on your own. 

Where should you start? 

You may not know where to start when it comes to changing your child support order. This is why it is helpful to speak with an experienced Maryland attorney regarding the options you have to modify an existing court order, protect your interests and prevent additional legal complications.

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Clinton Office
8808 Old Branch Avenue
P.O. Box 219
Clinton, MD 20735

Phone: 301-856-3030
Fax: 301-856-4029
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2981 Penwick Lane
Dunkirk, MD 20754

Phone: 301-855-3100
Fax: 301-855-8251
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