couple at a child support modification hearing

What to Expect at a Child Support Modification Hearing

Major changes in the life of a divorced parent, such as financial hardship, incarceration, serious injury, or a change in employment or marital status may require the modification of a child support payment amount. In Texas, the modification of a child support payment amount is accomplished at a child support modification hearing. Below is an overview of what to expect at a child support modification hearing in Texas. If you are a divorced parent who has recently experienced a change that requires the modification of a child support payment amount, please contact a Denton County family law attorney for additional information. 

The Attendees 

The typical attendees at a child support modification hearing are the child’s parents, the judge, and the parents’ attorneys. Children usually don’t attend child support modification hearings.

The Process

At a child support modification hearing, the parent requesting modification presents a statement explaining the reasons behind his or her request. In addition, since child support is based on parental income, the parents must provide the court with financial documentation. Also, the parents may present arguments at the hearing in support of their respective positions on the proposed modification. Typically, this information is presented to the court by each parent’s family law attorney. Following the presentation of this information, the judge reviews the case to determine whether to grant the modification request.

In Texas, the court can modify a child support order if

  • the circumstances of the child or parents have materially and substantially changed, or 
  • three years have passed since the previous order was rendered or last modified and certain financial guidelines are met.

In Texas, there are many events that a court may consider a material and substantial change in circumstances, including 

  • an increase or decrease in parental salary,
  • the birth of an additional child,
  • a change in the primary residence of the child,
  • an increase or decrease in a parent’s ability to financially support the child, and
  • a significant change in a parent’s employment.

The final step in the child support modification hearing process is for the judge to deny or approve the modification. If the judge denies the modification, the existing child support order remains in effect. If the judge approves the modification, the new child support amount will go into effect once the court files the judgment. 

Contact our Denton County Family Law Lawyer 

If you need assistance with a child support modification hearing in Texas, you need an experienced Denton County family law attorney in your corner. At Youngberg Law Firm, we understand the emotional and financial difficulties associated with family law issues. Therefore, when we take on your case, we will treat you with the utmost respect while working diligently to achieve a fair and just outcome on your behalf. Our experienced family law attorneys serve clients throughout Denton County, including Highland Village, Flower Mound, Little Elm, and Denton. Therefore, if you need a family law attorney in Texas, please contact us today for a free initial consultation. 

Youngberg Law Firm discusses how you can modify your child support or custody order in Texas.

How Can I Modify My Child Support/Custody Orders in Texas?

Following a divorce involving children, the court enters orders regarding child support and custody that the parents must follow. However, as time moves along, things change, and modifications to these orders are sometimes necessary. Luckily, in Texas, it is possible to modify child support and custody orders under certain circumstances. If you need to modify a child support or custody order in Texas, please review the information below, and contact a Denton County family law attorney as soon as possible for assistance. 

Modification via agreement

Parents sometimes make informal modifications to their support and custody orders. However, agreements that are not included in court orders don’t officially change the duties and rights of either parent. Therefore, even when parents wish to modify an agreement in a manner that is in the best interests of their child, they must file documentation with the court. When the parents cannot agree on a modification, though, they must take their disagreement to court. 

Modification via request

When parents can’t agree on a modification, they may ask the court to intervene. Regarding custody, any person who has rights to custody of a child under a court order may request a modification. Following a request for modification of a custody order in Texas, the court will require the parent or individual who filed the request to prove certain facts. If this individual is unable to prove these facts, the court will decline to order a change to the divorce decree. Depending on the request, the individual seeking modification of the order will be required to prove different elements, and all elements must be proved via the presentation of credible evidence, which typically takes the form of witness testimony and documentation.

How the court evaluates modification requests

Whenever an individual submits a modification request to the court, he or she must prove that the circumstances of the child or parents have materially and substantially changed since the court issued the prior order. Whether a change is considered “material and substantial” by the court will vary depending on the case. Given the subjective nature of this standard and the complexity of the family law system, anyone seeking modification of a child support or custody order should first contact a Denton County family law attorney for guidance. 

Contact our Denton County family lawyer 

If you are seeking to modify a child custody or support order in Texas, you need an experienced attorney on your side. At Youngberg Law Firm, we understand the difficulties you are going through and will work to achieve a fair and just outcome on your behalf. Our experienced family law attorney serves clients throughout Denton County, including Flower Mound, Highland Village, Little Elm, Corinth, Aubrey, and Denton. Therefore, if you need a family law attorney in Denton County, Texas, please contact us today for a consultation.