Carton & Rosoff PC-Attorney at Law

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Can you modify a child support order if income changes?

There are many reasons that people in New York no longer work for certain companies. Some people find a better job or simply do not like working a certain job and decide to quit. Others get laid off or let go by their employer due to a downturn in business and the employer can no longer afford to employ them. Others get fired because of their work performance and the company no longer wants them working for the company.

When people lose their jobs it can create uncertainty for them and can also create some financial problems since they no longer have an income. Without an income, paying monthly bills can become difficult. For some, these monthly bills include paying child support. This is a monthly expense like any other bill and if it is not paid then there can be consequences.

People are allowed to try to modify their child support orders when they lose a job and income. However, simply losing a job does not mean that the person automatically qualifies for a modification. They must demonstrate that they lost their job through no fault of their own and that their income has changed by at least 15 percent since the last child support order. So, if the person is receiving unemployment or received a severance when they lost their job, their income may not immediately decrease by at least 15 percent.

However, if they can demonstrate that their income has decreased by at least 15 percent, they may be able to modify their child support order. This is also true if the other parent is now earning 15 percent more than they were earning the last time child support was set or modified.

There are many parents in New York who have current child support orders. But, throughout life circumstances change and people lose jobs from time to time. This can make paying child support difficult, but the parent may be able to modify their current order to accurately reflect their current circumstances.

Source:, "New York - Changing a child support order in your state" accessed on Feb. 19, 2018

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