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Can I Modify My Child Support or Maintenance If I Lose My Job Because of COVID-19?

By: Alisse Camazine

With unemployment numbers rising at an alarming rate and people losing their jobs or being afraid of losing their jobs, many people are wondering if they can modify their child support or maintenance (alimony) if they find themselves without a paycheck as a result of the virus. The answer is, probably not immediately.

In order to modify any kind of court-ordered support, you have to show a change that is both substantial, which would include losing your job, and continuing, meaning long-term. If you lose your job as a result of the virus, that job loss may be temporary, and a temporary change is not sufficient to change child support. However, if after things return to a more normal state you are still unable to find employment, a modification may be in order.

One thing to remember is that a modification of child support can take a year or more to finalize in court, and that’s not even taking into account the delays resulting from the courts not operating on their regular schedules. These temporary job loss circumstances may be resolved by that time, which would remove any possibility of a modification.

To determine if you have a basis for modification, or for any other family law questions, please call the attorneys at Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C.


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