This video provides a general overview regarding a child support modification to reduce your child support if you have lost your job or had your pay reduced during the pandemic.
To schedule a consultation with a Texas lawyer at our Flower Mound, Lewisville or Odessa offices call us at (214) 513-0125 or 432-335-9000. You may also contact us through our website: thejimenezlawfirm.com
Contacting an attorney can seem intimidating. At The Jimenez Law Firm, P.C., we have worked hard over the years to ensure our clients remain comfortable with the legal process; we do this by providing personal service and individual attention. We strive to educate our clients on exactly how the law intersects with their specific problems. They rely on us for a realistic assessment of their cases and the challenges they might face along the way. Do not hesitate to schedule a consultation with a skilled lawyer.
The Jimenez Law Firm, P.C., provides representation through legal advice and experienced courtroom litigation in a wide range of criminal defense practice areas, including:
- Drug crimes
- Crimes against property
- Crimes against individuals
- Theft crimes
- Fraud including fraud against the government
- Probation violation
- Parole revocation
- Property damage
- Public intoxication
The Jimenez Law Firm, P.C. specializes in Family Law and Criminal Defense. Our offices are located in Flower Mound, Lewisville, and Odessa, Texas and we provide representation to residents throughout North Texas and West Texas who are struggling through a wide range of legal dilemmas. Many legal situations can be resolved through negotiation and mediation. When this communication breaks down, however, it is important to have an attorney on your side who has courtroom experience.
We are not only skilled negotiators but accomplished trial litigators. In fact, we prepare for every case as if it would be decided in court. Clients appreciate our attention to detail and our thorough preparation. We represent residents of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex in communities such as Lewisville, Denton, Dallas, Fort Worth, Flower Mound, Westlake, Southlake, Frisco, Plano, Carrollton, Farmer’s Branch, Irving, Grapevine, Highland Village, Richardson and in residents of West Texas such as Odessa, Midland, Monahans, Andrews, Crane and Fort Stockton.
At 0:31 – Many people come into the office saying they’ve either lost their jobs or had their income reduced due to COVID-19. We are going to offer tips on how to get your child support reduced if you have found yourself in this situation.
At 0:47 – Are you eligible to even apply to get your child support reduced? If you have found yourself unemployed or have had a drastic pay decrease, more than likely you will meet the court’s standards.
At 1:10 – The court is going to look at two things. They’re going to look at how much time has passed since the last time you went to court. If you went to court at least 3 years ago, the only thing you’re going to need to show is that the amount of support you need to pay has been reduced by $100 or more or that your monthly support obligations should be reduced by 20%. If you can prove one of those two elements, then you’ll be eligible for a modification.
At 1:50 – What we see most often is a material and substantial change in circumstances. If there is anything that has changed that is material or substantial, you can request that your child support be reduced. We’ve seen courts say that if there has been a change in income, that warrants a material and substantial change and they will grant a reduction in child support.
At 2:27 – If you’re receiving unemployment, that is considered income. Your child support will be based on what you receive for unemployment. If we have a client who says their pay has decreased. I will tell that client to bring in all pay records so that we can look at how much money they’ve earned. We’ll also look to see unemployment benefits. I’m going to want a third party to come in and say that the situations are not voluntary. It has been imposed on us by our situation. We want to show that as soon as you’re able to make money as you did in the past, you have no problem with an increase at that time. But, for right now, you need help from the court.
At 3:57 – One of the biggest questions I get is that if I’m not able to pay my child support, what is going to happen? Many people are familiar with contempt of court. This basically says that if you don’t do what the judge tells you, you could go to jail, you may have to pay a fine or attorney’s fees. You could face up to 6 months in jail per violation or up to a $500 fine. We don’t want you to be found in contempt of court.
At 4:57 – You’re going to have to pay this big chunk of money in the future if you don’t modify it now. If you’re supposed to pay $1,000 a month and don’t pay and don’t ask for a modification, you’re going to have to pay the $12,000 at the end of the year as well as interest.
At 5:23 – If you decide to file a motion and hire a lawyer to get your child support reduced. Your lawyer will file a petition to modify child support and request temporary orders. At our firm, we can usually get into the court in two weeks; some take 4-6 weeks. Typically within that timeframe, we can get in for a temporary hearing.
At 5:46 – During a temporary hearing, we present the evidence like pay records, potentially a witness, as well as modification calculations. We ask the court to reduce your child support on the first day of the following months. Typically most courts will give the child support amount and say it will continue until you have your hearing.
At 6:13 – I have had some courts say they’re going to reduce child support for the first couple of months and have you come back in 3-4 months for a status hearing. If your pay has gone up, your child support will go up. If your pay remained the same, your child support will remain the same.
At 6:39 – If we do the temporary hearing, get to your final hearing anywhere from 6-12 months. If your pay has gone up, your child support will go up. During the pandemic and during these uncertain times you need to make sure you are not accruing more debt, you are not being faced with contempt. Hopefully, you are able to take care of your family which should be your primary focus.
At 7:12 – This should give you an idea of whether you are eligible for a child support reduction and if it’s something you should pursue. If it is, I encourage you to reach out to a family law attorney, and hopefully, they can give you the insight you need and get you on your way.