Portland Child Support Modification Lawyer
Skilled Oregon Child Support Modification Lawyers
Child support may be modified any time there has been a substantial and unanticipated change in financial circumstances. This may be when someone loses a job, gains new employment has a change in health care or child care costs, or other financial reason. Child support may also be modified when a parenting plan changes if overnights are adjusted.
In cases where child support is managed by the Department of Justice or District Attorney’s office, an administrative review of the child support amount will be conducted every three years, upon a party’s request, even if no substantial change has occurred. The court may also modify child support.
Contact our Portland child support modification lawyers to determine whether an administrative modification or a court modification is most appropriate in your case.
What To Expect In A Child Support Modification Consultation
We meet with all potential clients in person for the first consultation. This allows us to meet potential clients and hear the background of each case, to determine if your case is a good fit for our office, and to provide information about a client’s rights and responsibilities under Oregon law. We offer this initial consultation for a flat fee of $100.00.
When starting the process for finding a lawyer for a child support modification, potential clients often ask “who is the best lawyer in Oregon for child support modification” or the “who is the best child support modification lawyer in Portland?” The answer is the lawyer who gets the results you need. Like the rest of family law, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to selecting a family law attorney. The best attorney for you is the one who listens to your circumstances, provides solid legal advice, and facilitates and achieves your goals. Contact one of our Portland child support modification lawyers today to set up a consultation.
Child Support Modification Lawyers In Portland
Child support is regularly modified. If there has been a 3-year time period since your last order took effect, or you have had a substantial change in your financial circumstances, you may be able to modify the amount of your child support. As it stands, Oregon’s Administrative rules currently allow child support to be reviewed every three years, upon request, even if no changes have occurred.
What Constitutes A Substantial Change In Financial Circumstances?
A substantial change in circumstances that may be considered in a child support modification can include:
- A change in a parent’s income — a substantial change in either parent’s income can justify an increase or decrease in the amount of child support payments.
- A job change — if the job change has resulted in a substantial change in either parent’s income, this may be cause for a support modification. If one party has left their job in an effort to eliminate or decrease child support responsibilities, however, a modification will not be considered. The court can impute the party’s income at its previous level.
- A change in the child’s needs — if there has been a substantial change in the financial needs of the child, this may justify a child support modification.
- A change in parenting time — whenever there is a substantial change in parenting time, child support modification may be justified. Child support will always consider the number of overnights each parent has with the child. Withholding support, however, should never be used as a remedy for parenting time interference. There are other ways to enforce your custody arrangements.
- A change in health care coverage — if one parent stops or starts carrying coverage for a child’s health care, a change in support will be considered, as well as potential cash medical support to assist with coverage or out-of-pocket medical costs.
While these are valid reasons to seek child support modification, some financial changes will not be considered. If a parent remarries or forms another domestic partnership, the new spouse’s or partner’s income will generally be considered in a child support modification. New spouses and partners have no legal obligation to provide support for the child.
Steps To Modifying Your Child Support
A parent who wishes to modify child support will submit a written request to the Oregon Child Support Program. The administrators will review and confirm the information they have been given and create a proposed modification based on that information. At that time, all parties will receive copies of the proposed modification and will have a chance to consent or correct any of the information.
If either parent does not agree to the modified amount, they can request a hearing, at which time an administrative law judge (ALJ) will determine the amount of an adjusted support payment that is appropriate. The ALJ’s decision can be appealed to the circuit court.
At times (such as during the COVID-19 pandemic), Oregon allows a streamlined modification process that is only available for parents who have lost their jobs or are receiving less income. In this case, a temporary modification may be granted for a six-month period.
Employment-related modifications are different from traditional modifications because they are based solely on income and employment-based circumstances. Whereas a traditional modification may often take months to complete, this streamlined version is more expeditious and short-term. However, if the parent is still not employed at the end of the six months, they may request another modification.
Get Legal Advice
The state of Oregon takes child support matters very seriously. If you feel your circumstances justify seeking a child support modification, you should discuss it with your Portland family law attorney to get guidance. The experienced Portland child support modification lawyers at Jill Brittle Family Law Group have guided and skillfully negotiated fair child support modifications for our clients throughout our careers. Contact us to schedule an initial consultation to discuss your child support issues and concerns.