When a divorce is finalized, a divorce decree will be entered with the courts. This final decree is supposed to serve as the final word on all matters related to the divorce. Many times, though, there are issues that may require amending the decree after it has been made final. If you have gone through a divorce and need to make changes to the final decree, there is a certain process that must be followed. If you do not follow the process exactly as mandated by law, you may find yourself in trouble with the court system. It is also pertinent to be aware that there are only certain matters that can be altered once a final decree has been entered. Before you choose to take matters into your own hands and have a final decree altered, contact us and allow a professional legal representative walk you through the proper process.
Three Matters That can be Altered After a Final Decree has Been Entered
Child Support Payments
When a final decree is entered, child support payments will be calculated based on the responsible person’s income at that time. However, because changes in jobs and salaries are common, courts will usually allow for support payments to be altered. Take for example that you now pay $600 a month in child support based on your income of $46,500 a year, which was your income at the time the decree was entered. Now, however, you have switched jobs and your annual income is only $38,500. Because of this, you may have the right to have your child support reassessed. It is also possible for child support payments to be increased if the responsible party receives a significant increase in pay. Never take child support issues into your own hands. If you do and fail to pay timely, you may be held in contempt of court, which can lead to time behind bars.
Daycare and Other Expenses
If the final decree mandates that you provide insurance for your children or provide money for other expenses, you have a change in life circumstances and you are no longer able to pay these expenses, then you have the right to ask a judge review the payment order. The judge will decide whether or not the life change, such as a loss of job, justifies a change in payment amounts.
Parenting Time and Legal Decision
A custody agreement is ordered in a final divorce decree. If, however, for one reason or another the agreement does not work sometime in the future, then changes can be made. For example, you move to a different State and you need the custody agreement altered to ensure the children can visit with you for an extended period of time during the summer. This change may be sufficient to allow a judge to amend the final divorce decree.
Get Legal Help Today
If you wish to discuss asking a court to amend your divorce terms, please contact us today.