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What can be done if child support payments become unaffordable?

You may be a first-rate parent who always follows through on your commitments in seeing that your children's financial needs are met. But anyone could find themselves in economic dire straits due to the loss of employment or some other form of misfortune. So what happens if you're a non-custodial parent and for some reason you cannot continue making your child support payments in full?

The Office of the Attorney General has produced a handbook that outlines a process that a non-custodial parent who is paying child support in Texas should follow when such a situation arises. First, you need to immediately give both the court and the OAG notification of your current circumstances. If you wish to change the conditions of your obligations, you will need to acquire a new child support order.

You might be able to get a new support order if your life changes to such a degree as to alter your capacity to make your payments. You may also qualify if the present support order has not been modified for three years or was created three years ago. You could also be eligible if you are presently paying an amount that has a $100 or 20 percent difference from that which you would be paying in accordance to your present income and your guidelines for child support.

If you are asking for modification due to unemployment, then the court may wish to see proof of your efforts at finding a job. These efforts may include participation in employment training programs.

Be aware that you cannot get payments that are past-due reduced or reimbursed. This is why it is important to contact the child support office and the court as soon as possible when you realize you are facing financial difficulties.

If life's circumstances necessitate a modification of your payment agreement, you could possibly find the services of a Texas child support attorney helpful. The attorney may be able to aid in clarifying to the court the reasons you wish to change the amount required by the current support order.

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