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Can I modify child custody or child support arrangements?

After a divorce, you probably want to move on with the next chapter of your life. However, life brings unexpected changes and you may find your divorce arrangements no longer match your circumstances. If this is the case, it may be possible to modify your custody orders or the amount of child support being paid.

Who can request a modification?

Either you or your ex-spouse both have the right to request a change. If your or your ex-spouse's situation changes in a way that could affect your court orders, you could request a modification.

When can divorce arrangements be modified?

Court orders can only be modified if there has been a significant change in your circumstances. When it comes to child support, this usually involves a large increase or decrease in income. In Tennessee, the standard is at least a 15 percent change in income level. This could include loss of employment, a promotion, or the gaining of significant sums of wealth, such as through inheritance.

You may want to seek modification to child custody if you or your ex-spouse wants to relocate. A modification can ensure that you still have time with the children despite the move.

How can an attorney help?

If you want to modify your support or custody arrangements, you will need to request a change and have court review and approve of it. An attorney can help you gather the necessary evidence to show that your circumstances have significantly changed. If you cannot prove a valid need for the change, it will not be approved. An attorney can also guide you through the process so you do not miss any steps or paperwork that you need to complete. When your children are involved, you want the best chance of success at caring for them properly.

If your ex-spouse is trying to request a modification that you do not agree with, an attorney can help you challenge it and keep your arrangement as it is now.

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