Child support calculations depend on a series of factors, including not only your income but that of the other parent as well as certain expenses that each of you pays. When you receive the initial support order, the payments may seem financially reasonable. Unfortunately, things change over time and it may not stay that way. The State of Tennessee offers an online child support calculator that lets you estimate the potential changes to your support payments in the face of financial changes.
There are a few common changes that the courts will consider for a child support adjustment.
Change in jobs
If you changed jobs for any reason and your new job pays less than the old one or leaves you with more expenses to cover, this can alter your income assessment for child support. When these changes cause financial hardship with your child support payments, you can ask the court to revisit the order.
Change in custody
The child support order factors into which parent has primary custody and how much time the children spend with the support-paying parent. When that timeshare distribution changes, such as if a child moves in with you, the child support obligation may change as well. Ask the court to consider the custodial differences and assess your child support payment accordingly.
Recognizing some factors that can trigger child support payment changes makes it easier to decide when to petition for modification. The more you understand, the more empowered you are to manage your own obligations.