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When can a child support order be changed?

Some divorced parents in Pennsylvania may wonder if and when a child support order can be modified. Although the process can be complicated, there are indeed circumstances under which a modification is possible.

An important detail to understand about child support orders is that they're not retroactive. Since changing financial needs won't immediately modify an agreement, it's necessary to begin proceedings to review the order as soon as hardships become apparent. Modification orders typically need to be filed in the same court in which they originated. All parties involved must be given an opportunity to review and sign the new agreement before it can be approved.

While financial hardships of various kinds are indeed the most common reason for modifying a support order, there are other causes that courts may consider in certain circumstances. For instance, modifications may be deemed necessary if the child's needs change in some way or if one parent remarries. Bear in mind that these amendments do not need to necessarily be permanent; it's possible for parents to seek a temporary modification in situations that call for it.

In these cases, someone who is thinking about revising a child support agreement may wish to explore their options with an attorney. Since failure to meet child support payments can often have serious consequences, it may be a good idea to take action before a potential problem grows worse. An attorney might assist clients in avoiding such difficulties by reviewing their current financial circumstances and assisting them in developing a case for modification. From there, the lawyer could help craft a support agreement that's more amenable to a parent's financial situation.

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