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Does Job Loss Affect Child Support Payments?

 Posted on February 07, 2024 in Child Support

IL family lawyerIt can be confusing going through the process of a divorce. Both spouses need to figure out so many things that will affect them once their lives are no longer lived together. If they have children, they also need to arrange how they will continue raising those children now that they are apart. Some of the aspects that need to be decided refer more to the logistics, including where the children will live and when they will spend time with each parent. Other aspects deal more with finances and covering childcare costs. However, these decisions are generally based on the spouses’ circumstances at the time the divorce is settled. If those circumstances change at some point and either parent is no longer able to meet their obligations, there are court-approved ways to modify the settlement. If you now find yourself out of a job and are concerned you may not be able to afford your child support payments, a knowledgeable Chicago, IL divorce lawyer can review your case and advise you on how to move forward during this stressful time.

Is It Possible to Get Our Child Support Arrangement Modified?

When you and your ex finalized your divorce settlement, the arrangements you agreed on were likely based on your circumstances at the time. If you were gainfully employed and earning a decent salary, you likely were not concerned about your ability to pay child support. If your income is lower than it used to be or has stopped due to unemployment, you might worry that the court will require that you keep making those payments even if that means you will be unable to cover other monthly financial needs.

Fortunately, the State of Illinois recognizes some circumstances it considers reasonable reasons for requesting a modification to your child support arrangement. The main circumstance is if a paying parent has an involuntary and unexpected change to their income, and they now earn less than they did during the divorce proceedings or are not earning anything at all. 

There are two important points to take into consideration:

  • The loss or decrease of income needs to be involuntary and unexpected. If you have quit your job, this would not be involuntary. If your planned retirement has arrived, this would not be considered unexpected.
  • The modification to your child support plan needs to be granted by the court. Even if you are sure that your situation meets the necessary conditions for a modification, you can not simply decide to stop paying or pay less than originally dictated in your divorce settlement.

Schedule a Free Consultation with a Cook County, IL Child Support Modification Attorney

If you have lost your job and you are worried about how you will be able to afford child support payments, an experienced Chicago, IL divorce lawyer can guide you through this stressful time of uncertainty. Please call 312-884-1222 to schedule a free consultation at The Law Office of George J. Skuros.

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